Olympiakos scored its first victory at the group stage of the Europa League, beating Dudelange 2-0 in Luxembourg on Thursday, while PAOK lost precious ground going down 2-0 at home to Hungarian champion Vidi.
Urged on by hundreds of its fans at the Josy Barthel stadium in Luxembourg, Olympiakos put an end to a winless streak of four games in all competitions and maintain its chances of making the top two of the pool that is led by Real Betis and AC Milan.
The 18th-minute introduction of Greece winger Lazaros Christodoulopoulos at injured Miguel Angel Guerrero’s place livened up the Greek team’s frontline, as he got mighty close to scoring several times, hitting the crossbar twice in the game.
Olympiakos had to wait for 66 minutes to open the score. Costas Fortounis took a corner kick that found Vassilis Torosidis, and the Greece captain headed the ball in from close range.
Then on the 81st minute Daniel Podence broke free toward the Dudelange area and fed Fortounis who doubled the Greeks’ lead thanks to a deflection at Edisson Jordanov’s leg. It has gone down as an own goal.
Olympiakos has risen to four points from three games; two weeks later it will host Dudelange in Piraeus.
At Toumba Vidi upset Greek league leader PAOK, winning 2-1 in front of Hungary’s prime minister Viktor Orban who was born at Szekesfehervar, the Hungarian champions’ base.
PAOK chose to rest some of its top-pick players and was made to pay for it. Its performance against a rather mediocre side that AEK dispatched in August at he Champions League playoffs was fairly disappointing.
The visitors on the other hand were clinical in their finishing and deserved to win.
Just 12 minutes into the match Loic Nego marginally prevented to ball from rolling out and crossed the ball into the path of Szabolcs Huszti, who easily opened the score for Vidi.
One minute from half-time Stopira headed in Vidi’s second goal, eluding the marking of Leo Matos after a corner kick to silence the home crowd.
PAOK is left with three points, same as Vidi and BATE Borisov, and will visit Vidi next on November 8.