APOEL/AEK Derby Ends Goalless, Massive Win for Doxa
(Playoffs, Matchday 8 Recap)
CYPRIOT FIRST DIVISION - PLAYOFFS (MATCHDAY 8)
|Date||Home Team||Score||Away Team|
|7-May-17||Apollon||3 - 0||Omonia|
|7-May-17||APOEL||0 - 0||AEK Larnaca|
|8-May-17||AEL Limassol||2 - 0||Anorthosis|
|6-May-17||Ermis||3 - 0||Nea Salamis|
|6-May-17||Ethnikos Achnas||1 - 1||Aris Limassol|
|7-May-17||Karmiotissa||1 - 2||Doxa|
Marios Antoniou from AGONAsport.com brings you a full recap of Matchday 8 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.
Apollon recorded an easy 3-0 victory over Omonoia in Limassol. The hosts were the better side in the first half and just before halftime, they found the back of the net with Maglica. Despite a push from Omonia in the second half, Apollon held their lead and killed the game with Alex Da Silva penalty before Vinicius added a third goal to form the final 3-0 scoreline. Apollon pulled within a point of 2nd place AEK and 5 points behind the leaders APOEL, with 2 games remaining. Omonoia are now 5 points behind 4th placed AEL and will likely miss out on next year’s Euopa League.
First placed APOEL and second placed AEK played to a goalless draw in Nicosia, a result the favors the current league leaders. The match did not produce the quality nor the entertainment that was expected in the top of the table derby. AEK were better the better side in the first half while APOEL recovered in the second half with a better display. APOEL kept their 4 point lead over AEK and can be crowned champions in next week’s match against their eternal enemies Omonoia. AEK must now win their remaining two matches and hope APOEL lose points if they want to have any hopes of winning this year's league title.
AEL’s 2-0 win over Anorthosis could very well give the Limassol side 4th place in this year’s standings and a ticket to next year’s Europa League. AEL dominated the game and had Ismael Sassi on a great night. The Frenchman scored a magnificent goal to put his team in front in the first half and after the restart, he scored a second to to seal the hosts’ victory. AEL will need one point in next week’s match away to AEK to secure 4th place while Anorthosis remain indifferent as they sit in last place of the championship group standings.
In a match that had no impact on the standings, Ermis defeated Nea Salamina 3-0. All three goals came in the second half from Artambe, De Melo, and Martynyuk, making their statement that they are the best team in the second group. Salamina retrieved to 3rd place of the group, a point behind Ethnikos, but remain 5 points clear of the relegation zone with 2 games remaining.
Aris managed to salvage an important point on the road against Ethnikos Achnas in a match that ended in a 1-1 draw. The visitors opened the score early in the game with Minas Antoniou, but the hosts equalised just before halftime with Kacharava’s 15th goal of the season. The result leaves Ethnikos in 2nd place of the second group while Aris are 4th, four points clear of the drop zone.
In a game of life or death between Doxa and Karmiotissa, Doxa came out on top shocking the home side with a 1-2 victory. Goulon opened the scoring for Doxa just 2 minutes into the game and 20 minutes later, the visitors were two ahead when Eninful found the back of the net. Karmiotissa answered immediately as Poljanec scored one minute later, putting fire into the match. Both teams wasted many chances to score with Karmiotissa’s Kairinos denying Fofana’s penalty kick to keep the hosts within one goal of Doxa. However, nothing changed till the end and the final whistle gave Doxa an important three points. The result leaves Doxa and Karmiotissa tied for the final safety spot, however Doxa hold the head-to-head advantage in the tiebreaker. It will be a neck and neck race between the two teams to avoid relegation in the final two games of the playoffs.