As the winter break approaches and the season’s mid-point is almost upon us, Marco Silva wants nothing but a Thrylos win in today’s home encounter with Asteras Tripolis.
With Panathinaikos slipping up at Iraklis, Silva wants to widen the Reds’ gap at the top. The Greens’ 1-0 defeat in the second city ensured they remain on 22 points in the Superleague table. Panionios leap frogged them into 2nd place with a 2-0 win over Giannina at home.
Silva’s side currently sit at the top of the table with 30 points from their first ten matches. Victory over the Arcadians today would see the Reds on 33 points, at least ten points clear of second place (assuming AEK were to win today and reach 23pts).
Let us not forget that the decision is yet to be made on the outcome over last weekend’s shameful derby postponement. The Reds could yet still be awarded a further three points, and, even the possibility of Panathinaikos seeing some of their current points tally revoked – putting them further behind with any slim hopes of a title challenge they may have.
Silva has laid down a challenge to his squad of taking seven victories from the remaining fixtures before the Christmas holiday break. The Portuguese tactician does not look set to rest on his laurels, and is determined to make his first season managing in Greece a successful one – at the earliest opportunity.
After today’s clash with The Star, December sees Thrylos contest three Superleague matches and three cup games; Arsenal at the Karaiskakis in the final group game of the Champions League and trips to Panegialios and Apollon Smyrnis in the Greek Cup.
It is a big ask of the side from the boss, but undoubtedly a task he feels is achievable from his squad. Having already beaten Arsenal away, and with them having the added pressure of needing to win, there is no reason to not believe we can enter that game confident of taking the maximum points from it. Domestically we have proven we are too good for our rivals. So long as the players don’t lose focus or adopt an attitude of complacency, there is nothing to suggest any sides at home should pose any real threat. The important thing, however, is the players remember that they still need to work hard in order to achieve the title this year, no one is going to hand us our sixth successive league title.
Even after only registering a draw in the opening cup game with Platanias, it is clear that Silva is taking the cup seriously. Repeating last season’s league and cup double is clearly his aim this term. Silva clearly wants to leave his impression on this club and is going about his business just perfectly so far. Should the team come up with the goods and satisfy Silva’s demands, Thrylos will be sitting pretty at the top of the league with 42 points. Last season’s title was won with 78 points, with four games more and 12 points more on offer in 2014/15 it makes a potential 42 points at the mid-season point this year all the more impressive.
Let us hope that today’s game with Asteras is the first three of those 12 Christmas points up for grabs!