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Cyprus round-up: Dropped points cost APOEL

Published: Sunday 29 September 2002, 22.15CET
APOEL Nicosia FC were joined at the top of the table by Olympiakos Nicosia FC and Omonia FC.

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Published: Sunday 29 September 2002, 22.15CET

Cyprus round-up: Dropped points cost APOEL

APOEL Nicosia FC were joined at the top of the table by Olympiakos Nicosia FC and Omonia FC.
Cypriot champions and UEFA Cup challengers APOEL Nicosia FC were held at home by Nea Salamis FC, allowing title rivals Olympiakos Nicosia FC and Omonia FC to catch them at the top of the table.

Points dropped
APOEL - who had won their four opening games - were left to wonder where their 100 per cent record had gone after a 1-1 draw against a doughty Nea Salamis. Armenian international Romik Khachadryan put the hosts ahead with a 34th-minute free-kick only for Nicos Nicolaou to get behind the APOEL defence to nod in the equaliser five minutes later.

Themistocleous the hero
Marios Themistocleous's 13th-minute header against Dighenis Morfou FC kept Olympiakos level on 13 points with APOEL, while Omonia joined them there after an unimpressive win over Alki FC. A 75th-minute own goal from Alki's Christos Christodoulou divided the sides in Larnaca after hosts Alki had Mihajl Vujicic sent off in the 54th minute.

Anorthosis on fire
Meanwhile, Cyprus' other UEFA Cup hopefuls, Anorthosis Famagusta FC, got the result they wanted ahead of the match with Iraklis FC this week - defeating Apollon Limassol FC 4-1 in Paralimni. Marios Neophytou scored his seventh goal of the season to lead the Cypriot charts alongside Kostas Frantzeskos of AEK Larnaca FC, while Timouri Ketsbaia, Kyriakos Koursaros and Radoslaw Michalski were also on target

AEL misery continues
AEL Limassol FC continued their disappointing start with a 0-0 draw against a hitherto pointless Enosis Neon Paralimni FC. In Yiannis Mantzourakis' first game in charge of AEL, the home team struggled to find the form which took them to third place and a UEFA Cup spot last term.

Wins for AEK and Achnas
In the other games, AEK Larnaca FC came from behind to beat Aris Limassol FC 4-2 at the Tsirion Athletic Centre with goals from Frantzeskos, Louis Eleftheriou - who registered with two free-kicks - and Zoltan Kenesei. In Achnas, home side Ethnikos Achnas FC claimed a 1-0 victory over struggling AEP Paphos FC courtesy of Dragoslav Musi's strike.

Striker dies
However, the weekend action was overshadowed by the death on Sunday of Michalis Michael, a striker with second division club Onisilos Sotiras FC, during the match against FC APEP. The 33-year-old former Anorthosis player suffered heart failure and subsequent attempts to revive him at a nearby hospital in Paralimni failed.

Last updated: 30/09/02 13.13CET

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