Four second-half strikes gave Olympiakos a precious 4-1 triumph over AEK in Sunday’s Super League derby, putting clear blue water between the two teams at the table.
Second-placed Olympiakos is now eight points ahead of the Yellows, and six behind leader PAOK that has a game in hand, the one it is about to play in Athens against Apollon Smyrnis. The result is also keeping Olympiakos coach Pedro Martins’s job safe.
AEK led three minutes into the match at the Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium with its top scorer this season, Ezequiel Ponce, after an error by Olympiakos keeper Jose Sa.
However the Reds equalized early in the second half with Mady Camara, before Costas Fortounis produced a moment of magic with a solo effort to give the hosts a 2-1 lead. AEK tried to react, but the Olympiakos counterattacks punished it with more goals from Ahmed Hassan and Fortounis again.
Fourth Atromitos is now one point behind AEK after a 2-0 win at PAS Giannina, while the battle for fifth, that will likely lead to Europe, rages on between Aris and Panathinaikos.
Ten-man Aris drew 1-1 at home with Panionios on Sunday, so Panathinaikos has cut the distance to the Thessaloniki club to two points courtesy of its 1-0 home win over Asteras Tripolis on Saturday, with the first Omri Altman goal since getting sidelined with a serious leg injury 11 months ago.
In other weekend games, Larissa drew 1-1 with Xanbthi and Levadiakos took a leap to safety downing Panetolikos 1-0.
On Monday, besides the Apollon Smyrnis vs PAOK match, OFI greets Lamia in a big game for the bottom half of the table.