Europa League Preview (Group Stage): PAOK vs. Dinamo Minsk

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Updated: September 15, 2014
PAOK

Match Date: 18 September 2014 (local time)

Venue: Stadio Toumba, Salonika

 

PAOK has been a familiar face in the Europa League. Unfortunately, the Greek squad is yet to grab a trophy in the said competition. Meeting Dinamo Minsk proved to be a good opportunity to feature in the tournament since it is the latter’s first appearance in the tournament. The Greek outfit, however, cannot afford to be complacent as Dinamo Minsk is ready to fight tooth and nail just to advance the latter stages of the competition.

 

The contenders

PAOK

PAOK currently trails Veria in the top spot of the Super League table, but that is alright since the season has just started.

 

The 2-point difference between the two is very manageable and there is no excuse for PAOK to not handle the match against Dinamo Minsk well.

 

Between the two, it is the Greek outfit that has the most experience. More often than not, its transition to the Europa League is brought about by its failure to qualify in the Champions League. They may not have made it to the latter, but certainly, every match that they participated gave them great footballing lessons that could strengthen their team form and depth.

 

Dinamo Minsk

Dinamo Minsk is one of the awaited debutants in this particular competition. Similar to PAOK, it also occupies the 2nd spot in Belarus’ Premier League Division.

 

Despite the fact that they are debutants in the tournament, this does not lessen their possibility of winning the upcoming match. They will be the first squad from Belarus that PAOK will face and they can readily use this aspect to increase their advantage over the visitor.

 

Possible head turners

Both Roberto Mak and Facundo Abel Pereyra have already featured for PAOK. However, expect the online betting favorite to launch a stronger attack should Steafanos Athanasiadis step up his game.

 

Prediction

 

PAOK 2-1 Dinamo Minsk

 

Image Source: PAOK