The Greek men’s national team underperformed at Malta in a friendly game on Thursday and was lucky to escape defeat with a 2-2 result through a late equalizer by DC United’s Taxi Fountas.
Manager Gus Poyet fielded a somewhat experimental XI with several problems at the Ta’ Qali stadium in Valletta. Still, the Greeks were happy to take a first-half lead via captain Tasos Bakasetas.
The second half started with the hosts equalizing thanks to Jurgen Degabriele and took a 2-1 lead 13 minutes on through a penalty kick by Teddy Teuma.
Greece then pushed forward to find an equalizer, and it did so four minutes from time, thanks to a tremendous shot by Fountas.
The defensive mistakes and the problematic transition from defence to the offence will leave Poyet with plenty to think about ahead of Greece’s next friendly game, which is scheduled for this Sunday against Hungary in Budapest.
Degabriele 54; Teuma 64 pen.
Bakasetas 40; Fountas 87
H. Bonello, J. Borg (81 K. Micallef), R. Camenzuli, S. Borg (46 F. Apap), M. Guillaumier, J. Mbong (52 J. Corbalan), P. Mbong (81 B. Kristensen), E. Pepe, T. Teuma, J. Degabriele (81 A. Satariano), S. Dimech (81 J. Jones).
A. Paschalakis, G. Tzavellas (46 K. Koulierakis), D. Pelkas (68 T. Fountas), A. Bakasetas (46 A. Bouchalakis), L. Rota, P. Hatzidiakos, P. Mantalos, D. Giannoulis (82 G. Kyriakopoulos), T. Chatzigiovanis, M. Siopis (80 S. Alexandropoulos), F. Ioannidis (68 A. Douvikas).
Referee Alain Duriex (Luxembourg).
Yellow cards J. Borg, Siopis, Mantalos, P. Mbong, Koulierakis.