SPORTS

Success-hungry Olympiakos shocked at home by Rosenborg

Norwegian outfit Rosenborg upset Olympiakos 3-1 in the opening Group F Champions League match for both clubs here yesterday. A stunned packed crowd of 33,000 at Karaiskaki Stadium saw the home team, with high hopes for some success in Europe this season, beaten by a team which is struggling in the Norwegian league. Two second-half goals by the visitors, one an own goal early in the period and the other in extra time tally by Oyvind Storflor, lifted Rosenborg to the victory. The only goal by Olympiakos was scored by a Rosenborg defender. «I am very proud of my players. We won at one of the most difficult grounds in Europe. We deserved the victory,» said winning coach Per-Mathias Hogmo. «We were unlucky with the goal we gave up,» said an unhappy Olympiakos Norwegian coach Trond Sollied. «It changed the match around. We tried to turn it around when we got to 1-1, but then came the second miracle goal. From then on it was just one team on the pitch and if it were not for a world-class goalie, things would have been different.» Sollied said Rosenborg took advantage of the opportunities given to them by Olympiakos. «Olympiakos controlled 75 percent of the match. In the second half we were in complete control, but matches are won by goals scored,» Sollied said. Olympiakos, who have not conceded a goal in their two opening victories of the domestic league, came out strongly in the contest, pressuring Rosenborg goalie Espen Johnsen. In the fifth minute Olympiakos defender Giorgos Anatolakis missed a close-range shot and seven minutes later Brazilian star Rivaldo had a blazing free kick punched away by Johnsen. The first goal in the match came in the 19th minute after a twisting free kick from the right corner by Olympiakos captain Predrag Djordjevic was mistakenly headed into the Rosenborg goal by Uruguay defender Alejandro Lago. But the 1-0 lead by the home team was short-lived as in the 42nd minute Olympiakos defender Ieroklis Stoltidis failed to clear the ball in front of the home team’s goalmouth and Per Ciljan Skjelbred snuck in to put the ball past Greek goalie Antonis Nikopolidis. In the last 10 minutes of the first half the panicky Olympiakos defense held on to keep the score at 1-1. In the second half, Rosenborg were gifted a goal in the 48th minute as a cross from the right side from Jan Gunnar Solli bounced over the head of defenders Anatolakis, Dimitris Mavrogenidis and Nikopolidis, and in the rush to save it from going into the net Nikopolidis tried knocking it away, only to hit the knee of Mavrogenidis and go into the net, giving the visitors a 2-1 advantage. Olympiakos had a few good chances to score from then on, notably a header from Rivaldo which was tipped away by Johnsen in the 76th minute. But with all the pressure targeting the Rosenborg goalkeeper near the end, Oyvind Storflor found the opportunity to get the ball near midfield, dribbled past Nikopolidis on a one-and-one, and sealed the win with one minute remaining in extra time.