Cyprus Mail

AEL maintain two-point lead over rivals Apollon

By Nemanja Bjedov

AEL’s coach Ivaylo Petev was pleased that his team managed to extend their unbeaten run to 10 league games as they trounced Enosis Neon Paralimni 4-1 at the Tsirion Stadium in Limassol to stay two points clear of their archrivals Apollon in the league standings.

“This was a very good game for my team. We started very aggressively and that was something we were looking for. We took an early lead and controlled the game throughout,” assessed Petev.

Monteiro opened the proceedings in the 11th minute, while two minutes later Serbian striker Andrija Kaludjerovic made it 2-0 on his debut for the club. Orlando Sa’s brace was interrupted by Marios Zannetou’s goal in the 23rd minute.

“I would like to congratulate Enosis Neon Paralimni on the fact that they came here to play football and did not sit back defending, which greatly helped this game to be open. These are very important three points for us and we are now fully focus on Omonia,” Petev concluded.

Omonia lost their first game under the new coach Miguel Angel Lotina who was given a warm welcome to Cyprus by Apollon’s coach Christakis Christoforou. The Limassol team eventually came out victorious at the GSP Stadium in Nicosia, 4-2.

“For my team these are three new points and nothing more than that. The value of the victory is high because it came against Omonia at their stadium, but we set our game plan right and players executed it perfectly. Welcome to Cyprus Mr. Lotina and good luck,” said Christoforou whose team held a 3-0 lead before the injury time during which three more goals were netted.

Lotina, on the other side, claimed his team was misfortunate on the day: “At the beginning of the game we played well. Then we conceded from the penalty spot and we missed a penalty ourselves. From that point onwards we somewhat lost our organisation; however, there was a lot of time left to be played and we recomposed, but we had no luck to get back on level terms.”

AEL lead the league standings with 37 points, while Apollon are second with 35. Ermis Aradippou trashed Doxa Katokopia 5-1 and they remain third with 33 points. APOEL only managed a 1-1 draw away to AEK Larnaca and the defending champions are fourth with 31 points.

Anorthosis beat Alki 3-1 at the Antonis Papadopoulos Stadium in Larnaca, which was enough for the Ammochostos side to climb to fifth place with 30 points, while Omonia dropped to sixth with the identical number of points but inferior on a head-to-head record. Elsewhere, Aris defeated AEK Kouklion 4-0.

In the final Round 16 game, Nea Salamina took on Ethnikos Achnas yesterday evening at the Ammochostos Stadium in Larnaca.

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