Meet the opposition | Apollon Ladies
As Swansea City Ladies prepare to take on Apollon Ladies in their UEFA Women’s Champions League first qualifying-round clash, we tale a closer look at the Cypriot champions.
What's their story?
Apollon Ladies, only founded in 2007, are Cyprus’ most successful women’s club having won the Cypriot First Division on 11 occasions.
They had no trouble in qualifying for the pinnacle of European women’s club football as they ran away with the title last season, winning the league by nine points.
They swept aside all of their domestic competitors easily as they won all 20 of their league matches, and scored 163 goals whilst only conceding four.
Champions League History
The Swans and the Limassol-based side do have history in the Champions League, as the teams faced each other in 2011.
Apollon have been very successful in the qualifying stages since their first appearance in the competition in 2009, going on to reach the knock-out stages on seven occasions.
They made history for Cypriot women’s football in that debut campaign during the 2009-10 season, as they were the first team from the country to win a point in the qualification group stages of the Champions League.
Who's the boss?
Kim Björkegren. Apollon are managed by 38-year-old Swede Björkegren, who only took charge of the Cypriot champions in June 2020.
Björkegren previously managed his hometown club of Linköping, winning the Damallsvenskan with them in 2017, and guided them to the quarter-finals of the Champions League where they were knocked out by Manchester City.
He later departed Sweden for China in 2018 to take charge of Beijing BG Pheonix. Once his spell in Asia concluded in 2019 his next job took him to Cyprus.