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APOEL in crucial Limassol trip on Thursday

Cypriot champions APOEL could put one hand on the league title trophy with a victory over fellow challengers Apollon Limassol later on Thursday.

Thomas Christiansen’s side travel to Limassol for the 4pm kick-off knowing that victory over their hosts would see them stretch their lead at the top to nine points above second place AEK Larnaca – who laboured to a 1-0 victory over Anorthosis Famagusta on Wednesday.

There will be five league games – in the end-of-season playoffs – left after the Easter break with APOEL currently the favourites once again to clinch a record-equalling fifth consecutive league title.
APOEL will be without the injured George Efrem, Stathis Aloneftis, Giorgos Merkis and Lorenzo Ebecilio while Vinicius could return. Giannis Gianniotas – who missed the previous league through suspension – is also back.

Meanwhile, there were media reports from Cyprus, Greece and Denmark that APOEL striker Pieros Sotiriou was poised to fly out to Denmark to sign for champions FC Copenhagen after the game against Apollon.

Neither club has confirmed the rumours.

Apollon, who were recently hit by the news that players Abraham Gneki Guie and Miguel Bedoya are receiving treatment for different illnesses, are currently seven points behind APOEL in third but having played a game less than second place AEK – who are one point above them.

Sofronis Avgoustis will still be without suspended defender Valentin Roberge but Esteban Sachetti and Semedo return from suspension.

On Wednesday, AEK moved one point above Apollon after a late strike from Constantinos Charalambides saw off the resistance of Anorthosis – who lost both Joao Victor and Guilherme Santos to red cards in the first half.

In other games, Demetris Christofi and Matt Derbyshire scored either side of Piti to clinch a vital 2-1 win over AEL as they continue their battle with the Limassol club for a top four finish.

In the relegation battle, Aris striker Markos Maragoudakis scored late goal as his side secured an important 3-2 win over Karmiotissa while Ethnikos Achnas and Ermis Aradippou fought out a 1-1 draw.

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