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Greek Cup final to limit fans over crowd violence fears

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ATHENS, Greece (AP) The Greek Cup final between champion PAOK Thessaloniki and AEK Athens on Saturday will be played in front of a limited number of invited fans due to fears of crowd violence.

No tickets will be sold for the match at the Olympic Stadium in Athens and Sports Minister Giorgos Vassiliadis said Monday’s decision follows police information that fans of both teams – and of other teams – were planning trouble on the sidelines.

PAOK and AEK have met in the past two finals with the 2017 game marred by extensive clashes in the stands.

Violence still plagues Greek soccer, despite repeated pledges by successive governments to impose order.

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Five PAOK fans hurt by hooligans before Basel match

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BASEL, Switzerland (AP) Swiss police say five fans of Greek club PAOK Thessaloniki were hurt in an attack by local hooligans at a hotel in Basel.

The incident on Wednesday came hours before Thessaloniki beat FC Basel 3-0 in a Champions League qualifying match, eliminating the Swiss team 5-1 on aggregate.

City police said on Thursday about 20 men, some of them with Basel flags, used unspecified objects to attack about 50 fans of the Greek team who were in and outside a hotel lobby. Four men and a 15-year-old girl were hurt, and one of them had to be taken to a hospital.

The assailants fled the scene.

Police appealed to the public to come forward with any photos or video recordings.

Greek police seek gun-toting soccer club owner

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ATHENS, Greece (AP) __ Greek police are seeking the gun-toting owner of PAOK Thessaloniki and four others after they marched onto the soccer field following a disputed goal at the end of a league match.

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PAOK owner Ivan Savvidis walked onto the field accompanied by bodyguards, and appeared to be carrying a pistol in a holster around his waist. The Sunday match in the northern city of Thessaloniki between PAOK and AEK Athens was eventually abandoned after the disputed 90th-minute goal, which would have put host PAOK ahead 1-0.

Police say they are investigating Savvidis, who holds a gun license, for illegal entry onto the field and for possession of an object that could cause harm in a sporting venue.