Olympiakos adds league title to last weekend’s cup win

Olympiakos won the Greek league title yesterday with a 1-0 away victory over Iraklis, thanks to a second-half goal by Brazilian star Rivaldo. It also earned the Piraeus team the league-and-cup double following last Saturday’s Greek Cup win over Aris with a 3-0 win in Patras. Olympiakos clinched its 33rd first-division title with 65 points, one more than last year’s champions Panathinaikos, who beat OFI 2-1 away in Crete. Olympiakos, winner of eight of the last nine Greek league titles, and Panathinaikos advance to next season’s Champions League. AEK, which went into yesterday’s final round of league play with slim hopes for the title and a Champions League berth next season, did its utmost with a 3-0 home victory against Thessaloniki team Apollon Kalamaria. The wins by Olympiakos and Panathinaikos, however, kept things unchanged at the top of the standings. AEK finished the season third, three points behind Olympiakos, and will play in the less lucrative UEFA Cup competition. Also through to the UEFA Cup are PAOK and Xanthi – fourth and fifth in the league standings, respectively – and Aris as Greek Cup finalist. Despite its place in European club-level soccer next season, Aris, which had lost 3-0 in the cup final against Olympiakos last Saturday, was relegated to the second division. The Thessaloniki team finished third from bottom after being sanctioned heavily by a sports tribunal for a recent pitch invasion by fans. Also relegated were Corfu club Kerkyra and Cretan team Ergotelis. Both lasted just a season in the big league. Second-division champions Larissa were promoted to the first division, as were Levadiakos and Akratitos. The first division’s other results from the 30th and final round of play were: Ionikos 1, Xanthi 1; Kallithea 3, Aris 1; Panionios 2, Ergotelis 0; PAOK 2, Aegaleo 4; Kerkyra 1, Halkidona 3.

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