Κυριακή, 05 Δεκεμβρίου 2010 22:48

Kavala 0-1 Olympiakos

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Todays game comes from the Eastern Macedonian port of Kavala and sees us pitted against a dangerous team who had given us problems in both of last seasons games. However despite an early loss of the ball, we were the first team to have an attempt on goal with a mow cross from the right from Rommedahl and we followed this up just moments later with a snapshot on goal from Mirallas. Kavala did have some early chances of their own, notably from a free kick on the area but there was no real threat from them. Their teqam was still getting forward but our defence was holding firm and they were not making many chances on our goal. For ourselves, we were called back during one attack for being offside whilst for the remainder of the time, we were simply probing forward with Mirallas and the three midfielders behind him.

After the opening fifteen minutes, the game had still not settled down and we were looking a little too rushed on the ball and certainly not playing as well as we could. Kavala for their part were making matters very difficult for us across the middle of the pitch and we were having trouble in controlling the game as yet. We did however still manage to make some good work down the wings and having our own (albeit weak) chances on goal but found that on occasion that we needed to time our attacks a little better to avoid being caught offside. On other occasions, we had managed to set up attacks perfectly then too much weight had been placed onto the ball coming from the midfield so that it was easily taken by the Kavala defence.

By the half hour mark, we had started to take control of the game whilst Kavala were playing more defensively. We were still having to clean up the odd attack from our opponents but we were most doing the attacking in the game ourselves. Kavala did have a couple of long range chances at Pardo on the 32' mark but there was nothing too serious and the shots went over the net. At the other end we won a corner only to lose the ball almost immediately and gift Kavala a counter attack and a chance on our goal which Pardo had difficulty in saving. A great chance on goal was created in the 40th minute when Fetfatzidis was plainly kicked in the leg and forced over in the box providing us with a penalty. Fuster converted the shot on goal and so we finally got the lead which we largely deserved.

The remaining four minutes or so saw Kavala come at us for a while longer until we took over in the field and had another few chances on the Kavala goal. The half finished after a single minute of addiotnal time and as we left the pitch we could be happy with the single goal advantage.

The second half initially saw more of the same for us. More attacks on the Kavala goalmouth and more chances beiong created for us, a good chance perhaps being Holebas breaking into the box from the left but finding his pass to the right being crowded out. We placed more pressure on the Kavala goalmouth as we got further and further into the half with us making attacks down both wings and Mirallas having a half chance on goal which he failed to take (unfortunately). We made our first substitution early on in the second half with Hurtado replacing Fetfatzidis and Fuster moving left into the left wing position. The change would initially appear to be defensive, replacing an attacking midfielder with a defensive one but there may be more into it than this.

With the player change, we started to fall back further down the field which unfortunately allowed Kavala to come forward a bit more. Kavala took advantage by having a couple of chances on our goal including a free kick which only just (thankfully) went over the net. A second substitution (Of Marko Pantelic for Dennis Rommedahl) was also made at the 69' mark as we sought to keep the running of the team fresh and free from problems. We wer still continuing to attack on occasion and we were still also capable of pushing the ball around midfield even though Kavala were starting to come forward at us more now.

Now as the game is in the final 15 minutes of its duration, we see ourselves push forward in search of a second goal finally. Pantelic had a good chance with the keeper beaten but had his shot on the open net bounce harmlessly off a defender allowing the goalkeeper to recover and get back into position. A further chance is knocked behind for a corner and yet another chance is simply blocked by the sheer mass of bodies protecting the Kavala box.
One of the better chances in the game comes from Kevin Mirallas who has a low shot taken on goal from the edge of the box but finds the keeper justabout able of reaching over with his outstretched fingers and pushing the ball clear. As it was though, we were unable to increase our lead and despite a late flourish from Kavala, we managed to keep the score intact and the game finished 0-1 after three minutes of extra time. ps. Third and final substitution made in the 93rd minute with Giannis Papadopoulos replacing Ariel Ibagaza (who has been quite frankly great in midfield today).

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