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AEK Athens claim Greek Cup honours

Published: Saturday 30 April 2011, 23.13CET
Goals by Nikos Liberopoulos, Nabil Baha and Pantelis Kafes ensured AEK Athens FC celebrated their first Greek Cup victory in nine years with a 3-0 win against first-time finalists Atromitos FC.
AEK Athens claim Greek Cup honours
AEK lift their first piece of silverware in nine years ©AFP
Published: Saturday 30 April 2011, 23.13CET

AEK Athens claim Greek Cup honours

Goals by Nikos Liberopoulos, Nabil Baha and Pantelis Kafes ensured AEK Athens FC celebrated their first Greek Cup victory in nine years with a 3-0 win against first-time finalists Atromitos FC.

AEK Athens FC celebrated their 14th Greek Cup triumph after a 3-0 win against first-time finalists Atromitos FC at the Olympic Stadium.

Goals by captain Nikos Liberopoulos (28), Nabil Baha (78) and Pantelis Kafes (85) earned the capital outfit their first silverware in nine years. After Liberopoulos broke the deadlock with a firm header from Nacho Scocco's cross, Atromitos came close to equalising in the 53rd minute, when Marcin Baszczyński's close-range header went just wide.

Four minutes later it was AEK's turn to be frustrated as a header by Traianos Dellas was superbly turned on to a post by Atromitos goalkeeper Charles Itandje. However, substitute Baha's powerful strike effectively ended Atromitos's resistance and another reserve, Kafes, sparked premature celebrations with a dinked finish five minutes from time.

"I came to Greece to win titles," said AEK coach Manolo Jiménez. "So this is a very important evening for me. I want to congratulate my players on a job well done and to thank them for their stamina and cool head throughout the season. Now it's a time to celebrate and then start preparing for the league play-offs."

The play-offs begin on 8 May and involve the four teams − Panathinaikos FC, AEK, PAOK FC and Olympiacos Volou FC − that finished the regular season in second to fifth place. The side that wins the play-offs will participate in UEFA Champions League qualifying.

There are also three UEFA Europa League places up for grabs and should Jiménez's charges fail to reach the UEFA Champions League, they will be entitled play in the UEFA Europa League play-off round in August as cup winners.

Last updated: 01/05/11 3.31CET

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