Vidi claim superb Europa League victory in Greece
MOL Vidi posted a famous away win in Greece this week when they triumphed 2-0 over PAOK Salonika in their third fixture of the UEFA Europa League group-stage campaign. This, their first success of the first three games, maintains the Hungarian league title-holders' hopes of finishing as one of the group's top two teams which will qualify for the knockout stages of the competition.
Vidi travelled to the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki in hope of scoring their first goals and seizing their first points of the competition this season and these ambitions were boosted in the 12th minute when attacking midfielder Szabolcs Huszti opened the scoring, Loic Nego doing well to dispossess José Ángel Crespo by the byline and pass inside for the former Hungary international to apply an accomplished finish.
To their credit, PAOK applied the pressure straightaway in their pursuit of an equaliser and created several dangerous attacks, but an end product wasn't forthcoming. Vidi also continued to press forward and with rather greater success, Stopira heading in Huszti's corner from five metres to double the visitors' lead before half-time.
It had been a superb opening half for Vidi and they followed it up by producing a solid, confident second-half showing, nullifying the current Greek league leaders and going close to a third goal, substitute Armin Hodzic only being denied by an excellent save from home goalkeeper Alexandros Pahalakis after going through one on one. Thus, Vidi secured their first Europa League points since they defeated FC Basel at home in autumn 2012 when still known as Videoton.
Group L is now led by Chelsea with a perfect nine points from three matches, six ahead of Vidi, PAOK and BATE who all sit on three points. Next up for Marko Nikolic's side is PAOK at home in the Groupama Aréna on 8th November.
Europa League, Group L, 3rd matchday:
PAOK 0–2 MOL Vidi FC 0–2 (HT: 0–2)
Venue: Toumba Stadium. Attendance: 22,000. Referee: Aranovszki (UKR)
Goalscorers: Huszti (12.), Stopira (45.)
Vidi yellow cards: Hadzic (23.), Kovácsik (48.), Nego (73.), Fiola (75.), Hodzic (85.)
PAOK Salonika: Pahalakis – Léo Matos, Varela, Crespo, Tosca – Sahov (Prijovic, 52.), Canas – Limnios (Warda, 46.), Pelkasz, El Kadduri - Karelis (Biseswar, 66.)
MOL Vidi FC: Kovácsik – Fiola, Juhász R., Vinícius, Stopira – Nego, Hadzic, Pátkai - Huszti (Kovács I., 73.), Milanov (Nikolov, 79.) – M. Scepovic (Hodzic, 65.)
The group's other result:
Chelsea 3–1 BATE
MOL Vidi FC's next Europa League fixtures:
Thursday 8th November: MOL Vidi FC-PAOK, 18:55
Thursday 29th November: BATE–MOL Vidi FC, 18:55
Thursday 13th December: MOL Vidi FC–Chelsea. 18:55