The regular season of the Greek Super League reaches its climax this weekend with Olympiacos CFP firmly on course for their eleventh title in the last 12 years.
The Piraeus side lead AEK Athens FC by two points and know that victory over Iraklis FC at the Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium on Sunday would seal their 36th championship crown. Anything else would allow AEK to win their first league title in 14 years, assuming the capital side triumph at home against Asteras Tripolis FC. Having had the better of their duels with the leaders this season, AEK certainly feel they would be worthy champions.
At the opposite end of the table, GAS Veria and Apollon Kalamarias FC are already certain of being relegated, with either Ergotelis FC, Atromitos FC or Levadiakos FC soon to join them in Division B. Levadiakos have perhaps the best chance of avoiding that fate as they need only a draw at home to a Veria team possibly short on motivation.
This season also marks the introduction of a play-off system to determine European qualification. The four teams who finish from second to fifth will compete against each other for a place in the UEFA Champions League second qualifying round and a berth in the UEFA Cup. So far, Panathinaikos FC and Aris Thessaloniki FC are assured of taking part as they lie in third and fourth spot respectively.
When the play-off games will be held is far from clear, however, as a legal dispute threatens to disrupt proceedings. On 3 February, Kalamaria beat Olympiacos 1-0, but the Thessaloniki outfit were later stripped of the three points and deducted a further point after the Hellenic Football Federation (EPO) intervened. They accepted Olympiacos's post-match objections to the participation of Roman Wallner, adjudged to have played for more than two clubs in one season after spells with Falkirk FC and Hamilton Academical FC in Scotland before joining Kalamaria in January.
Kalamaria have taken the case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne, filing a petition for interim measures. The case was heard on Thursday and a verdict is expected on Friday, or Monday at the latest. If the club are successful, the EPO will be unable to confirm the final standings of the Greek Super League until the final decision of the CAS in May, leaving the play-off system in limbo until then.
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