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A lot still to play for in final round before Cyprus playoffs

THREE games are to be played on Saturday in the final round of the regular season in the Cyprus football championship, with two teams fighting to avoid relegation.

Pafos FC and Doxa clash in Pafos, while at the other end of the table, Omonia can secure a place in the top 6 playoff group if they avoid defeat against third-placed AEL.

The final game on Saturday involves bottom of the table Ermis Aradippou taking on Anorthosis, who look as though they will lose out on a top-six finish following their nine-point deduction last Monday for fielding Nigeria goalkeeper Francis Uzoho with an invalid health certificate.

The club will learn the result of their appeal over their points deduction on Saturday morning, when the Cyprus Football Association is expected to make a final decision.

A few weeks ago many believed that a top-six finish for Omonia was mission impossible, but a recent good run, coupled with their nearest rivals dropping points unexpectedly, leaves the Nicosia team needing just a point to make sure of finishing in the coveted top group.

AEL though are tough customers and despite many pundits writing them off for the championship they are just three points off the top with the playoffs still to come where they will face the two teams above them twice.

Anorthosis’ season is turning into a nightmare. Their woes were compounded earlier this week when two of their players (Douglao and Mikeladze) were suspended for disciplinary reasons and a third, Danijel Pranjic, complained that the players have no support and are unpaid for up to three months.

Their opponents, Ermis Aradippou, are six points below their nearest rivals and they need to start picking up points if they will have any chance of survival. Their new coach (fifth of the season) Chrysis Michael is desperate for his first win and a demoralised Anorthosis may offer him the best chance so far.

The third game on Saturday pits together two of the most inconsistent teams in the league, Pafos FC and Doxa Katokopias, who would deservedly defeat one of the ‘big teams’ one week and go on and lose to a relegation candidate the next.

Doxa would be content with a draw as they hold a two-point advantage over their rivals.
Pafos FC v Doxa (5pm), Omonia v AEL & Ermis Aradippou v Anorthosis (6pm)

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