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Omonia defeat a reality check for Anorthosis

Anorthosis Famagusta FC may have been holding their own with Europe's finest this season but they were brought back to earth with a bump when they lost their 39-game domestic unbeaten record at AC Omonia.

Temuri Ketsbaia experienced his first league defeat in 18 months on Monday
Temuri Ketsbaia experienced his first league defeat in 18 months on Monday ©Getty Images

Run ended

Dellas takes blame
The result sent Omonia top, one point above unbeaten APOEL FC and two clear of Anorthosis. It was a pick-me-up for an Omonia squad beaten 3-2 at APOEL the previous week and later fined for their performance. Now, though, Anorthosis need to bounce back and defender Traianos Dellas – whose misplaced pass led to Omonia's second goal – said his side had to show character to overcome the setback. "That was our worst display since I arrived at the club," the Greek international centre-back said. "The blame lies purely with the players and I take personal responsibility for the second goal. It was my mistake and it cost us the game. But big teams show their worth at hard times, and I think we are a big team."

Ketsbaia warning
Losing has become a rare experience for Anorthosis coach Temuri Ketsbaia, yet he hoped the defeat would be a wake-up call for his players who retain a realistic hope of reaching the UEFA Champions League knockout stage. "The players didn't put into action some of the things we had discussed beforehand," Ketsbaia said. "We didn't mark our opponents properly and conceded three sloppy goals from mistakes. The game was finished from then on. Congratulations to Omonia, because they wanted the win more than us. We must pick ourselves up and dust ourselves down. We have tough matches coming up and if we play like we did tonight we won't stand a chance."

Georgallides delight
There was little sympathy from Omonia's former Anorthosis goalkeeper Antonis Georgallides, as his club underlined their ambitions for a 20th league title and a first since 2002/03. "The mood in the camp was very low after the defeat by APOEL," Georgallides said. "But the board stuck with us as did the training staff and the supporters, and we dedicate this victory to them and everyone who got behind us. It's a great relief because we had a tough week."