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Last Updated: Tuesday, September 9, 1997
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* = ARIS FC SALONICA * = Opposition * = Stats for both teams


Iltex Lyki 0-2 ARIS FC (08/09/97)

Mirtsekis (15'), Dalkidis (58')

Aris FC:
Talikriadis, Panagiotidis, Katsaros, Panopoulos (Kennedy, 71), Strantzalis,
Mitsopoulos, Koltsidas, Edinho (Simonovic, 46), Dalkidis (Vlahoudis, 77), Mirtsekis, Borbokis
Like he wanted it to be, was the first season match for ARIS yesterday... With an easy victory against "Iltex Lyki" in Kalohori, without speeding up at all.

Maybe the over 5,000 ARIS supporters who were present yesterday in the match were a bit more demanding, however they left the stadium satisfied from the final result, and more satisfied from the performance of the team in the biggest part of the game.

It is true that ARIS didn't show his real abilities last afternoon. Just played the needed to get the 3 points in easy rythms and without any hard pressure from Lyki. The only time that Talikriadis felt the danger, was in the 33rd min., when after a mistake of Koltsidas, Moustakas made the pass along ARIS' goalposts, but Panagiotidis forced the ball to a corner before Maksimovic had the chance to score. All the rest of the game belonged to ARIS, who finally managed to win the match without ever being in any danger.

Strantzalis and Borbokis

From the beginning, ARIS didn't give any rights to "Lyki" to believe that they could do something better than the loss. By pressing in the midfield, the "yellows" took up the game and seeked for a goal. Our superiority brought early the good news, as in the 15th min., Nikos Mirtsekis scored his first goal in the new season. Borbokis made a nice move from the right side, made the long pass and in the heart of Lyki's defence line, Mirtsekis found the perfect header to send the ball in Kehagias' nets.

This goal "broke the ice" for ARIS players, and while all of us waited the rest to be easier than it was, they made the easy into hard. For inexplickable reasons, George Firos' players seemed to move back and not to attack with the same intense rythms, in order to score a second goal. Maybe it was due to the developing fatigue that captured all of the players, as the field was very wet and heavy.

Lyki found the chance to come back in the game for a while, but they showed nothing special except for the moment of the 33rd minute. Within the first half, two free kicks in 11' and in 18', shot by Borbokis and Edinho respectively, were quite close ones, but Kehagias said 'no' both times. Another good chance for the 2nd goal was Dalkidis' header, after a corner kick from Strantzalis, but neither it found nets.

The second half was a one-show as well. ARIS played the ball in half-field, the "yellows" lost several chances for their 2nd goal, which finally came in the 58th min. of the game. It was Mirtsekis who made the back-header and found Dalkidis, who sent the ball in with an excellent shot near the goalpost.

ARIS could raise the score in 0-3, if in the 81st min. Mirtsekis' header hadn't found the horizontal crossbar after a fine long pass from Borbokis. Another big chance had no happy end for Mirtsekis, when in 62' he lost his balance after a pass from Katsaros, and didn't manage to send the ball into the nets. Lyki made their presence again, when in 92' Maksimovic got into Talikriadis' area from the right, but his shot ended up in a goal kick.

From the best performers of ARIS, we could pick up Michalis Panopoulos, who was a tremendous help especially in the first half. He lead the team's way of play, with his well- counted ball passes, but his tiredness from the National Team game in Sunday vs Slovenia, was obvious in the 2nd half and gave to George Firos a motive to substitute him. Just beside him, Stefanos Borbokis, was a constant threat for Lyki's goalkeeper, as he was responsible for the first goal and many other good chances in front of Kehagias. Also very good was Giorgos Koltsidas, in the defence, who was the most stable ARIS player in the game, if we except one mistake he made in the 1st half. Mirtsekis showed his class for another time, as he remains a reliable goal-machine and a specialist in headers. Dalkidis and Katsaros were also positive, as they were the pleasant surprises of ARIS yesterday.

Most of ARIS people made complaints about the unexpected wetness of the field, which made it really rough and heavy for the players, despite the fact that it was sunny and it hadn't rained for days ! Iltex Lyki's people said that it wasn't their fault and that someone forgot to close the watering machines last night, but many believe that they did that on purpose.

Nevertheless, it's remarkable that the supporters of ARIS made a fantastic 12th-player in the match, and they left no doubts that ARIS is condemned to be on top and that this year in the 2nd League is just a bad dream. Although Lyki had given only 1450 tickets to ARIS, the blasting and numerous presence of ARIS fans was succeeded from the fact that they managed to get almost ALL of the tickets of the game, and a great maze of them got into the stadium without tickets... Result: over 5000 ARIS supporters, giving their best to ...survive in a 3500 capacity ! It is definitely a great number for an away game, and just gives us an idea for what is going to happen in the next game in ARIS' home, Harilaou Stadium, against Trikala...

George Firos said he was satisfied for the victory, but he also expressed his complaints against the people who manage Lyki, due to the field-wetness incident. He also said that ARIS is capable of performing lots better than this game, and that he is ambitious for the games coming.

* The team played for the first time with black shirts, black shorts, and only the socks were yellow. Even our badge was different, with only the "God Aris" being yellow, and the rest was white and black. This is our uniform for this year, as the traditional yellow shirts shall be wore again only in the A' National League, hopefully next year.-
Subs not used:
Katergiannakis, Zahopoulos
Dalkidis, Strantzalis, Panagiotidis
Iltex Lyki:
Kehagias, Moustakidis, Papachristos, Papadopoulos K., Josa, Maksimovic
Papadopoulos G., Papadopoulos I. (Kakoglou, 23), Moustakas,
Novi (Savidis, 59), Kormaris (Pantelis, 46)
Subs not used:
Info not available
Kakoglou, Kormaris
Kastrinos (Corfu)
about 6,000

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