Panathinaikos claim Champions League qualifying berth

Panathinaikos claimed Greece’s second Champions League spot on Wednesday after a 1-1 draw against Atromitos in the playoffs left the Greens with an unassailable lead at the top of the table with one match left.

Giannis Anastasiou’s team took a 33rd-minute leadthrough forward Victor Klonaridis, only for Stefano Napoleoni to equalise with five minutes left.

The draw was enough for Panathinaikos to go into the third qualifying round of Europe’s elite competition, however, because PAOK Salonika slumped to a 1-0 defeat at Asteras Tripolis.

Olympiakos Piraeus qualified automatically for the Champions League group stage after wrapping up their 41st Greek league title in March.

Panathinaikos top the playoff table with 11 points after five matches with Tripolis and PAOK second and third respectively on seven points. Atromitos are fourth with four points.

That will be a massive disappointment for PAOK, who finishedrunners-up in the regular season.

After losing 4-1 to Panathinaikos in the Greek Cup final PAOK have now missed out on a place in the Champions League and will have to settle for Europa League football.

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