Collateral damage for Reds after loss

Olympiakos has returned to Greece disappointed and with some collateral damage from its 1-0 loss to Metalist Kharkiv in Ukraine on Wednesday for the UEFA Cup. The soft goal that Olympiakos conceded in the 88th minute to Metalist’s Edmar Aparecida means that the Reds can forget the top two spots on the table and will have to fight for third place against Hertha Berlin on December 18 in Piraeus. Avoiding defeat will see the Greek champion through. Yet the result was not all that mattered in Wednesday’s loss, as other problems also emerged following the game for Olympi-akos. Defender Vassilis Torosidis has twisted his ankle and is likely to miss the next 10 days’ action. If he recovers in time, he may be fielded for the game with Hertha. Paraskevas Antzas, however, was booked in Wednesday’s match and will have to serve a one-game penalty during the group’s decider match. About 180 Olympiakos fans who were meant to travel to see the game at Kharkiv were left stranded at Athens International Airport on Wednesday as the flight was canceled at the last minute due to the financial problems of the airline. The frustrated fans nearly caused havoc at the airport but, thanks to the intervention of other people, calm was swiftly restored. Olympiakos had the support of just 80 Greeks who braved the cold to reach the Ukranian city. Now Olympiakos is preparing for what should be a relatively easy home game against Levadiakos on Sunday evening, hoping to maintain its good form in domestic competitions.

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