Quick-fire Apollon claim Cypriot Cup

Apollon Limassol FC struck 45 seconds into the Cypriot Cup final on their way to a 2-1 victory over First Division runners-up APOEL FC in Larnaca.

Apollon celebrate their sixth Cypriot Cup triumph
Apollon celebrate their sixth Cypriot Cup triumph ©Apollon Limassol FC

Mustapha Bangura scored the fastest goal in Cypriot Cup final history as Apollon Limassol FC defeated APOEL FC 2-1 in the Larnaca showpiece.

Bangura struck after 45 seconds of a match refereed by Italian official Roberto Rosetti, turning in a cross from Antonio Núñez which Christos Kontis had failed to clear. APOEL equalised midway through the first half, however, when the unmarked Marcin Żewłakow headed in a cross from fellow Pole Kamil Kosowski. APOEL were largely in control thereafter but their lack of potency in front of goal was punished 18 minutes from time by Giorgos Merkis, who powerfully headed in a free-kick from Daniel Quinteros.

"This is a very special moment for me," said Apollon coach Slobodan Krčmarević, who replaced Thomas von Heesen midway through the season. "We will continue to work hard at this club so we can win more trophies." For APOEL, it was a bitter end to a campaign in which they became the second Cypriot team to make it through to the UEFA Champions League group stage. Ivan Jovanović's side led the standings towards the end of the season only to end it in second, nine points behind AC Omonia.