AEK Larnaca upend AEL, Apollon earn key win over Omonoia
CYPRIOT 1st DIV: CHAMPIONSHIP PLAYOFFS
|Date||Home Team||Score||Away Team|
|14-Apr-19||AEL Limassol||2 - 3||AEK Larnaca|
|14-Apr-19||Omonia||0 - 2||Apollon Limassol|
AEK Larnaca won a wild 3:2 decision away to AEL Limassol, while Apollon earned an important win of their own, 2:0 away to Omonoia.
AEL Limassol hosted AEK Larnaca at the Tsirion Stadio in Limassol. AEK drew first blood as Ivan Trickovski found Apostolos Giannou in space, Giannou then made a drop pass back to Trickovski who fired a strike past Vozinha in the 25th minute. Ten minutes later, the hosts answered on a corner and a sliding volley off the boot of Kevin Lafrance and past Tono Ramirez to make it 1:1, the score which would hold up through the halftime break.
AEK were able to regain their lead quickly in the second half, they earned a corner, and Truyols found himself in the right place at the right time, he placed a strong header past Vozinha and AEK went back up 2:1 in the 50th minute. AEL once again had a response ready in the 68th minute. Leandro Silva took a long free kick, which found the head of Ruben Jurado, which set up a perfect opportunity for Lafrance, and he buried his second goal of the match past Vozinha. Trickovski hoped to connect with Giannou, but he just couldn’t get his head on the cross. Florian Taulemesse set up a chance for Giannou, but Vozinha at full extension denied him. An unlikely play decided this match. In the 82nd minute, a weak header from David Catala bounced off the pitch, and it was completely misplayed by Vozinha and it eluded him, AEK were up 3:2 and never looked back. AEK Larnaca finished off a strong 3:2 away win over AEL Limassol. AEK remain in 3rd place as a result, AEL remain in 4th place, but the gap between them is now 5 points.
Omonoia hosted Apollon at the GSP Stadium in Nicosia. Apollon wasted very little time setting the tone for this match. The Omonoia defense got caught flatfooted on a throughball and it sent Emilio Zelaya in on goal, and he beat Konstantinos Panagi through his legs to give Apollon the lead in just the fifth minute. Despite the poor defense, it was a shot Panagi should have been able to stop. Apollon continued to carry the play, but they couldn’t hit the target, and had to settle for a 1:0 halftime advantage.
Omonoia were more ready to go to begin the second half, but David Ramirez and Dimitris Kolovos both missed the net on their respective chances. Then Kolovos managed to get one on net, but Bruno Vale was able to make the save. Then at the other end, Petros Psychas made it 2:0 in the 59th minute. It was the first career goal for Psychas, as Zelaya fed Joao Pedro, who centered it for Psychas who controlled the ball, turned and fired past Panagi. Omonoia tried to alter their fate, Derbyshire forced a nice save by Vale. Then Alex Soares showed his frustration and was charged with a red card. In the end, Apollon got a 2:0 win over Omonoia in Nicosia, and it was a much needed win. Apollon remain in 2nd place, and they remain within four points