SPORTS

Olympiakos draws AEK in Cup quarterfinals

The dream draw of Olympiakos vs AEK in the quarterfinal materialized on Friday, as two of the capital’s three giants will face off in a two-leg tie for a place in the semifinals of the Greek Cup.

AEK may still be in the second division, but it has built a roster capable of beating Super League sides, as it has shown in friendly games (3-2 win over Panathinaikos) and in the Cup (3-1 aggregate win over Kerkyra).

Furthermore a clash between two of the most powerful men in Greek soccer, Olympiakos president Vangelis Marinakis and AEK strongman Dimitris Melissanidis, will certainly add some spice to the tournament. One hopes there is no recurrence of the shameful events in last year’s semifinals between Olympiakos and PAOK.

The first match will take place in Piraeus on February 12 and the return on March 5 in Athens.

In the other home-and-away quarterfinals, there is a pairing of two second-division teams as Hania will face Apollon Smyrnis. Panionios will clash with second-division Iraklis Thessalonikis and cash-strapped OFI is facing yet another trip to Thrace (after eliminating Panthrakikos), as it will meet Xanthi.

All this means that Xanthi, victor of Panathinaikos in the round of 16, now has a strong chance to make the final of the Cup.