SPORTS

Gov't postpones AEK vs OFI game

By George Georgakopoulos

The Greek financial crisis has been biting the country?s sports in many ways, one of which has forced the postponement of the Super League game between AEK and OFI Crete, originally scheduled for Saturday evening.

AEK's financial troubles, partly due to the non-payment of sponsorship money from state gaming company OPAP and the reduced number of fans attending its home games, have meant it was unable to secure tax clearance for the issuing of tickets for the Saturday game at the Olympic Stadium.

That would mean that no more than 50 people would have been able to attend the game, as even season ticket holders would not be allowed in for the 7.30-p.m. kickoff.

However, after pressure from AEK, the General Secretary for Sports, Panos Bitsaxis announced late on Friday the postponement of the game on public order concerns. The pretext used was that AEK fans might gather outside the Olympic Stadium and cause riots in protest for the closed doors.

This predictably provoked the angry reaction of OFI, who had already arrived in Athens from Iraklio for the game.

It is not known when the match will take place, as on Wednesday OFI is involved in a Greek Cup game and the next weekend will see no league action as the Super League has suspended it in protest for the new sports law.

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