Panathinaikos – Tottenham 04.10.2012
Panathinaikos face an uphill task after the 3-0 defeat to Maribor in the first round, especially as Tottenham arrive to Greece with a very strong squad and very motivated to build on the good showing in the 0-0 draw with Lazio.
Nobody knows what is happening to Panathinaikos, one of just two true Greek giants, but it is more than evident the club are sinking further and further every season. Given the disastrous financial situation in the country itself, nobody was surprised to see the club fail to sign proper replacements for Ninis, Cleyton, Kante and Karagounis, and that has affected team’s showings this term. PAO were hammered by Malaga in the Champions League play-offs, before suffering an embarrassing 3-0 defeat to Slovenian side Maribor, so we surely cannot expect them to fare much better against Tottenham. PAO have no failed to win any of their last six games and the trend looks likely to continue.
With the major changes the squad underwent in the summer, a slow start was pretty much expected from Tottenham, but their fans must be delighted to see the team back at their best. Spurs have not only won four of their last five games, but have played impressive attacking football in the process, with the 3-2 victory at Old Trafford the highlight of their season. The triumph becomes even more important when we take into account that it was Spurs’ first win there after 23 years, so there is every chance the players will be brimming with confidence before the clash with out-of-sorts Panathinaikos.
The strong line-up against Lazio proved Andre Villas-Boas wants to do well in Europa League and he sent a stron line-ups on the field.