Scorer: Ospina off line; ‘never scared’ of Arsenal

Matt Stead

Kostas Fortounis said he saw David Ospina off his line before the Colombian scored his own goal, while Olympiacos were “never scared” of Arsenal, according to their head coach.

Ospina, chosen ahead of Petr Cech despite this being a ‘must-win’ game for Arsenal, inexplicably dropped the ball into his own net from Fortounis’ corner, handing the Greeks a 2-1 lead at the time.

Arsenal equalised soon thereafter, but Olympiacos scored the winner just a minute later to secure a memorable victory.

Speaking to UEFA’s official website after the game, Fortounis revealed that he had seen Ospina off his line before attempting his audacious effort.

“I saw Ospina a few steps away from his goal and I said to myself: ‘Why not try it?’ Fortounis said.

“I am very happy it turned out well. It is one of the biggest away victories ever for Olympiacos. We played very well, especially in the first half.

“This away win gives us legitimate hope to clinch second spot in the group.”

The victory ended a 50-year losing streak for the Greeks on English soil, and it represented their first win in 13 against English opposition since playing West Ham in 1965.

It also brought to an end a run of six successive away defeats in Europe, and head coach Marco Silva praised his players post-match.

“We were very concentrated on the game, very focused,” Silva told reporters.

“The most important thing was for the players to give everything they had, to believe in themselves and never be scared.

“We were never scared, even when Arsenal scored. We always respect our opponents but we were never scared and never thought we couldn’t make it.

“Whichever team comes here to win needs to know how to suffer, to put up with the pressure, and I think that was one of the key features here today.

“We ran a lot and resisted when Arsenal tried to tire us, we were very well organised defensively and had very quick responses to Arsenal’s goals which was very important.”