By Iacovos Constantinou
League leaders APOEL continued their impressive start to the season in Cyprus with a 1-0 win over Nea Salamina while the weekend’s other top clash between AEK Larnaca and AEL ended in a 1-1 draw.
Rafik Djebbour’s header in the 26th minute was enough to give champions APOEL all three points against much improved Nea Salamina at the GSP stadium in Nicosia.
APOEL controlled play for most parts of the game but in the final 20 minutes Nea Salamina grew in confidence and could have snatched a
The visitors felt hard done when the referee refused them a penalty in the first half which according to their press spokesman was ‘the very definition of a penalty’.
APOEL coach Giorgos Donis said that given the circumstances (injuries and a midweek Champions League game against Paris St. Germain), he was pleased overall with his players’ performance.
AEK Larnaca were unlucky not to take all three points against AEL as they had a number of chances to make the game safe.
AEK went ahead through Catala but the lead lasted just four minutes as Barcelos equalised for the visitors.
AEK went on the offensive in search of the winner but AEL’s keeper Romero on the one hand and some wayward finishing kept the score level.
Omonia nearly threw away two points against lowly Doxa Katokopias who could have equalised deep into injury time but Ramos was unable to beat Omonia keeper Giorgallides from the penalty spot.
Omonia had taken the lead through Kirm early in the second half but were unable to build on that lead despite controlling play.
Ermis coach Nikky Papavassiliou was furious with his team as they allowed Ayia Napa to fight back from 2-0 down and earn themselves a point.
De Pina and Onilo gave the home side the lead but two goals in the final half hour by Cypriot striker Kolokoudias salvaged a point for the bottom of the table team.
In the final game of the weekend Anorthosis did just enough to take all three points against Othellos, winning by a solitary Polo goal. Their task was made all that easier in the second half when referee Panayiotou harshly red-carded Othellos’s Oulise.