SOCCER

PAOK beats AEK to set up Cup final with Olympiakos

paok-beats-aek-to-set-up-cup-final-with-olympiakos

Olympiakos and PAOK will vie for the Greek Cup in May after clinching the ticket to the final with home wins against PAS Giannina and AEK on Wednesday and Thursday respectively.

With the absence of fans possibly being a blessing in disguise, as the matches went on peacefully unlike in other years, PAOK scored a second win against AEK on Thursday, this time a come-from-behind 2-1 triumph at Toumba that completed a 3-1 aggregate victory for the Thessaloniki club.

AEK needed to score to cancel out PAOK’s 1-0 win in Athens three weeks earlier, and managed to do it halfway through the second half with Kostas Galanopoulos, a few minutes after PAOK captain Adelino Vieirinha missed a penalty.

However PAOK managed to turn things around in the last 10 minutes, as it managed to equalize on the night with Michael Krmencik, and then seal qualification to the final with a spectacular lob by Andrija Zivkovic in injury time.

A day earlier Olympiakos had beaten PAS 3-1 in Piraeus to advance to the final on a 4-2 aggregate result, aspiring to complete a second consecutive double in the final at the Olympic Stadium of Athens.

The Reds took a 2-0 first-half lead with a Youssef El-Arabi brace. PAS regained some hope through Alexandros Kartalis early in the second half, but seven minutes on Bruma restored the hosts’ two goal lead.