AEK Bring Interest Into Title Race
(PLAYOFFS, MATCHDAY 3 RECAP)
CYPRIOT FIRST DIVISION - PLAYOFFS (MATCHDAY 3)
|Date||Home Team||Score||Away Team|
|1-Apr-17||AEK Larnaca||2 - 1||APOEL|
|2-Apr-17||Omonia||0 - 2||Apollon|
|2-Apr-17||Anorthosis||0 - 1||AEL Limassol|
|1-Apr-17||Doxa||3 - 0||Karmiotissa|
|1-Apr-17||Aris Limassol||0 - 1||Ethnikos Achnas|
|3-Apr-17||Nea Salamis||4 - 1||Ermis|
Marios Antoniou from AGONAsport.com brings you a full recap of Matchday 3 in the Cypriot First Division Playoffs. For the current Cypriot First Division standings and full schedule click here . Highlights for each match can be found here...
AEK recorded a great 2-1 come from behind victory over leaders APOEL at the AEK Arena in the opening game of the championship group. The defending champions opened the score early in the game with their captain Nuno Morais. AEK then took control of the game and pressed for an equaliser, but the score remained the same at halftime. After APOEL did not manage to double their lead with an incredible lost chance from Ebecilio, AEK equalised with Mytides in the 81st minute. The Larnakeis completed the incredible comeback with a free kick by Larena into stoppage time, recording a great victory that gives a new interest into the title race. APOEL had one of their worst performances of the year, but remain in the 1st place with Apollon and AEK, 4 and 6 points behind respectively. AEK managed to stay alive into the title race beating the title favourites and regenerated their morale for the upcoming games.
Apollon recorded an important 0-2 win on the road against Omonoia in Nicosia. Both teams were looking for the win in order to climb higher in the table, but Apollon were overall better than the Prasinoi in the 90 minutes of play. The game was open in the 1st half but did not produce any goals with both teams creating multiple goal attempts. Apollon stepped in better for the 2nd half and with goals from Sardinero and Piech got the victory while the hosts failed to threaten in the game. Apollon took advantage of APOEL’s loss to pull within 4 points of 1st place, while Omonoia retreated back to the 5th place.
Anorthosis hosted AEL at the Antonis Papadopoulos Stadium with the visitors coming away with a 0-1 win. Anorthosis started better however a tragic mistake by goalkeeper Koprivec resulted in a red card and left his team with 10 players for the rest of the game. AEL took advantage of the opportunity and opened the score with Andreas Kyriakou. Anorthosis recovered after the goal and despite playing with less players, the hosts dominated the game looking desperately for the equaliser. Anorthosis were unlucky in their chances, having to face an undefeatable Rafa Romo in AEL’s net. AEL’s goalkeeper stopped many goal attempts and kept the clean sheet as his side held onto an important victory. AEL climbed into 4th place while Anorthosis are stuck in 6th place.
Doxa knew that only win against Karmiotissa would give them hopes for avoiding relegation, and they did so with an emphatic 3-0 scoreline. The hosts wasted no time to go in front in the score with Fofana’s second minute goal and doubled their lead with Corominas late in the first half. The hosts returned for the 2nd half the same way they went in for half time, with Corominas giving a great assist to Tiago Gomes who formed the final score with his goal. Karmiotissa are now 5th with Doxa just 4 points behind their opponents and will look to avoid relegation with their results in the remaining games.
Ethnikos Achnas earned an important win on the road prevailing 0-1 in Limassol against Aris. A fast paced, balanced 1st half ended goalless, however Ethnikos started better in the second half and opened the score with Zelaya’s spot kick. The Argentine won the penalty that brought a red card for Aris’ defender Alvarez, leaving the hosts with 10-men. Ethnikos easily held onto their lead and gained 3 important points to stay out of relegation trouble. Aris are 4 points clear of the drop zone.
In the final game of the week, Salamina easily defeated Ermis 4-1 at home. Makriev scored 2 early goals giving the hosts a comfortable lead in the game. A second half penalty kick from Martynyuk brought Ermis back into the game, however Salamina struck twice before the end with Dudu and Kousoulos to seal their victory. Despite the loss, Ermis still lead the 2nd group while Salamina trail the group leaders by only one point.