- Associated Press - Saturday, May 31, 2014

NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) - APOEL Nicosia was crowned Cyprus champions for the 23rd time on Saturday after beating AEL 1-0 in a replay of a match that was abandoned on the season’s final weekend.

Irish forward Cillian Sheridan picked up a rebound and stroked the ball past AEL’s Moroccan goalkeeper Karim Fegrouche in the final minutes of the first half.

The match at the neutral Antonis Papadopoulos stadium in Larnaca was played without any fans.

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APOEL finishes the season with a league double after clinching the cup title earlier this month. It’s APOEL’s first back-to-back championship in 65 years.

With the win, APOEL equaled league leader AEL on points, but it took the championship on account of a better head-to-head record.

The May 17th match between the two sides at Limassol’s Tsirion stadium was stopped in the 51st minute after APOEL’s Brazilian defender Kaka suffered a head injury when a flare allegedly launched by an AEL fan went off in the team’s bench.

The Cyprus FA’s Judiciary Committee had found in a majority ruling last week that it would be “unfair” to rule against AEL outright, opting instead to allow the championship to be decided on the field.

APOEL had filed an appeal against the “unjust” ruling that it said legitimated violence by not meting out the appropriate punishment by handing the championship to the Nicosia team.

But the appeal wasn’t heard because the entire appeal board resigned.

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