PAOK beats Aris 4-1 to sit 2nd in Greek league


ATHENS, Greece (AP) -PAOK scored four times in the first half Sunday for an easy 4-1 win over fellow Thessaloniki club Aris in a Greek league game that ended with three players and PAOK coach Giorgos Donis getting sent off.

Liam Lawrence opened the scoring in the 12th minute, and Giorgos Katsikas and Giorgos Fotakis added goals to make it 3-0 by the 30th. David Aganzo pulled one back for Aris in the 39th, but Stefanos Athanassiadis restored the three-goal lead in the 43rd.

The game turned rough towards the end, with Lawrence, Katsikas, Donis and Aris' Yannis Gianniotas all getting red cards during the 10-minute injury time.

PAOK is in joint second place with Panionios, three points adrift of league leader Olympiakos, which won 1-0 over Atromitos Saturday.

Also Sunday, Veria won 1-0 at Panthrakikos, Platanias beat Xanthi 3-2 and Panathinaikos drew 0-0 with visiting Asteras, with home fans loudly booing the players at the end.

Once Olympiakos' main rival for the title, Panathinaikos languishes in 11th place, having drawn all three of its home games so far.

Former powerhouse AEK Athens is faring even worse, in last place with only one point from five games after losing 1-0 at Panionios on Saturday. On Sunday, the club, which also faces severe financial straits, announced it had fired coach Giorgos Vlahos. It is reportedly in talks with veteran coach Angelos Anastassiadis.

Club president Giorgos Mavros announced late Sunday night he will submit his resignation Monday. Mavros, a former player with AEK, had been elevated to the presidency at the end of last season promising to find investors for the team.

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