AEK won the Greek Cup in a captivating Final held at the Panthessaliko Stadium, Volos, and secured their first domestic double in over four decades with a resounding 2-0 victory over PAOK Thessaloniki.
This historic triumph not only marked AEK’s 16th Cup title but also shattered PAOK’s previous winning record in their head-to-head cup final clashes.
Right from the start, the match was intense. PAOK, also known as the “black and whites,” launched a strong offensive. However, AEK’s solid defense, led by goalkeeper Cican Stanković, held their ground even when AEK’s Lazaros Rota was sent off.
Despite the setback, AEK showed great resilience. Harold Moukoudi turned the tide by scoring the opening goal just 20 minutes after Rota’s red card. This crucial moment demonstrated AEK’s unwavering spirit despite PAOK’s continuous attacks.
In the second half, PAOK’s Douglas Augusto and Andrija Živković made several attempts to equalize but fell short. The match reached a critical point when Augusto missed a clear chance in the penalty box in the 76th minute, further adding to PAOK’s difficulties.
In stoppage time, AEK’s Paolo Fernandes delivered the final blow with a decisive goal that left PAOK’s defense, including Iceland international center back Sverrir Ingi Ingason, stunned.
Despite the match being played without fans due to security concerns, AEK’s loyal supporters gathered at their home ground, OPAP Arena, to celebrate this historic victory.
The final whistle not only marked AEK’s triumphant Greek Cup win but also capped off a memorable season in Greek football.
Under the guidance of coach Almeida, AEK demonstrated their dominance, achieving a long-awaited domestic double that had eluded them since 1978. It signified AEK’s triumphant return to the pinnacle of Greek football.
Earlier in May AEK celebrated its 13th league title. It was the second title for AEK in the last five years as the Athenian club returned to the top after an epic battle with rivals Panathinaikos.
History of AEK
Established in Athens in 1924 by Greek refugees from Istanbul in the wake of the Greco-Turkish War (1919–1922), AEK is one of the three most successful teams in Greek football (including Olympiacos and Panathinaikos).
The club has appeared several times in European competitions (UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, and the now defunct UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup).
It is the only Greek team to have advanced to the semi-finals of the UEFA Cup (1976–77) and the quarter-finals of the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup twice (1996–97 and 1997–98).
AEK was also the first Greek team to advance to the quarter-finals of the European Cup (1968–69) and also to the group stage of the UEFA Champions League (1994–95).
Related: Memories of Pontus and Asia Minor Dominate Opening of AEK Stadium
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