A must win situation for Aris
The rest of the results in Day 18 make today’s match a must win situation for Aris. That is of course if the team from Thessaloniki wants to make the first of the many steps needed to avoid relegation. Aris (11 pts.) must focus on getting closer to the teams that are not unreachable. Apollon (14 pts.) is their today’s opponent, Veria (15 pts.) failed to win (2-2) the home match against Platanias (19 pts.), Levadiakos (17 pts.) lost from Panthrakikos and Kalloni (19 pts.) could not possibly get anything in the away match against Olympiakos (4-0).
So far this group of teams is closer to relegation and it is very interesting to see that Aris and Kalloni are the only ones that have managed to be really dangerous when playing away. If Aris will start taking advantage of their home strength they will add a lot of pressure to all the teams above them in the standings.
To the preview and betting pick for the Monday match of Day 18:
ARIS vs. APOLLON SMYRNIS
Aris fought hard in the last away match against PAS Giannina (2-1) but the home team was more determined for the win and they showed it in the field. Their recently arrived coach, Mr. Soulis Papadopoulos, had some time during the break to work on the weaknesses of his team. In his statements to the press he sounded very confident he will manage to keep Aris in Super League and his first goal will be to improve the home performances of the team. Kyrghias (DEF/12) and Tatos (MID/17/2 goals) are banned for this match and both players are considered important absences.
Apollon Smyrnis was running an undefeated streak of four matches (1W-3D) which ended in the last match of the first round when they faced Olympiakos at home (0-5). The Champions were too strong to have any hopes for a positive result but if they play like they did before it they will have good chances against Aris who has lost the home confidence of the past (0W-4D-4L). Kanakoudis (DEF/6) will not be available for this match because he is banned.
Betting Pick: The draw at halftime @ 2.10
The odds on the home win are falling rapidly and I find it impossible to place a bet @ 1.60-1.65 for a team that has not won at home after 8 matches. Even against Apollon who has got only two points after eight away attempts (0W-2D-6L).This match is just too important for both rivals and I expect them to be careful in defense and try to get the win during the second half. Like I said the odds are too low on the win of Aris but the halftime/fulltime option Draw/Aris @ 4.00 is a fine risk.