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Olympiakos strikes late to clinch the Europa Conference League trophy

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Olympiakos strikes late to clinch the Europa Conference League trophy

In a historic moment for Greek football, Olympiakos has become the first Greek club to win a European title, defeating Fiorentina 1-0 in extra time in the Europa Conference League final Olympiakos strikes late to clinch the Europa Conference League trophy

The winning goal was scored by Moroccan striker Ayoub El Kaabi in the 116th minute, securing a place in the history books for Jose Luis Mendilibar’s side.

This achievement marks a significant milestone for Olympiakos, as they become the first Greek club to lift a European trophy.

Prior to this, Panathinaikos was the only Greek club to reach a European final, losing to Ajax in the 1971 European Cup.

The match was intense from the start, with both teams creating opportunities.

Daniel Podence forced a fine save from Fiorentina’s Pietro Terracciano, while Andrea Belotti missed a chance at the other end.

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Fiorentina thought they had taken the lead, but Nikola Milenkovic’s goal was disallowed due to offside.

The first half saw Fiorentina with more chances, but Olympiakos’ goalkeeper, Konstantinos Tzolakis, made crucial saves to keep the score level.

The second half saw fewer opportunities, but Tzolakis again came to the rescue with a spectacular save from Christian Kouame’s effort.

As the match headed into extra time, Olympiakos appealed for a penalty, but it was deemed not to be a handball. Stevan Jovetic, introduced from the bench, forced a good save from Terracciano, but the match seemed to slow down, with neither team willing to take risks.

Just when penalties seemed certain, El Kaabi headed home Santiago Hezze’s cross in the 116th minute, securing the win for Olympiakos.

The goal was met with a thunderous roar from the majority Greek fans in Athens, and after a lengthy VAR check, the victory was confirmed.

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Jovetic, a former Fiorentina icon, expressed his pride and joy, saying, “Amazing. For Olympiakos and me. Really proud of my guys. We did great all year and deserved it.” He added that the celebrations in Athens would be “amazing.”

Fiorentina, on the other hand, suffered defeat in consecutive Europa Conference League finals, having lost to West Ham in 2023. Jovetic commended Fiorentina, saying, “I have to compliment Fiorentina, two years in a row. A shame for them.”

This historic win marks a new chapter in Olympiakos’ history, and the celebrations will surely be remembered for a long time.

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