SOCCER

PAOK and Olympiakos leave it late but stay in Cup

Panathinaikos will face Lamia in the other semifinal

PAOK and Olympiakos leave it late but stay in Cup

PAOK, Olympiakos and Panathinaikos have joined Lamia in the semifinals of the Greek Cup after emerging victorious from their second-leg quarterfinals on Wednesday.

PAOK staged a memorable injury-time comeback at AEK, winning 2-1 even though it went into injury time trailing 1-0 to a Simoes goal from the 83rd minute.

On the fourth minute of time added-on Jasmin Kurtic scored a spectacular goal that put PAOK in front on aggregate (the first match had finished goalless and away goals still count in Greece), before Alexandru Mitrita added insult to AEK’s injury with his winner two minutes later.

For a place in the Cup final, PAOK will have to fight it out with champion Olympiakos, that needed extra time to eclipse a determined Panetolikos in Piraeus with a 3-1 score on the night.

The Agrinio team had won 2-1 in the first leg and brought the Reds within seconds of elimination in Piraeus. Olympiakos led from the sixth minute with new signing from Paris St Germain Bandiougou Fadiga, but on the 85th Nikos Karelis shocked the Reds through his equalizer, that would have sent Panetolikos through were it not for Giorgos Masouras’ injury time goal that forced extra time.

Panetolikos was already with 10 men, but still held on till the 115th minute, when Masouras once again came to the Reds’ rescue for the final 3-1 score.

Panathinaikos had the easiest task of the three who qualified on the night, as it visited second-tier Anagennisi Karditsas, carrying a 4-0 advantage from the home leg. On Wednesday the Greens won 1-0, thanks to a late Sebastian Palacios strike to advance 5-0 on aggregate.

In the semifinals Panathinaikos will face Lamia, that two weeks ago had eliminated Aris.