EUROPE: Champions League
Time: 8:00 PM
Venue: Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium (Piraeus)
Two 1-0 victories across both legs against Neftçi PFK secured Olympiacos’ progression into this UEFA Champions League (UCL) third qualifying match up. Those two wins have contributed to the Greek champions conceding just one goal across their last five UCL qualifying fixtures (W5), so confidence should be high as they aim to reach the competition proper for a third consecutive season.
Recent UCL encounters at Karaiskakis Stadium have produced plenty of late goalmouth action, with Olympiacos’ most recent seven UCL home fixtures seeing a combined eight match goals after the 60th minute. Irrespective of when the goals arrive, Pedro Martins’ men can extend a 100% home record vs Bulgarian opponents (W4) with another win here.
Having had to play two qualifying ties (W3, D1) to reach this stage, Ludogorets are bidding to advance to the UCL group stage for the first time since the 2016/17 campaign. A benefit of this, and an early start to their domestic campaign, is that they’ve already played seven competitive matches this season and are yet to lose (W6, D1). Impressively, they netted 3+ goals in each of the last four victories during that sequence.
The Bulgarian champions have complimented their free-scoring start to the season with a robust backline, and this is highlighted by the fact they restricted their opponents to under 1.5 goals in all of those matches – a feat they’ve also achieved in their last six UCL matches.
Players to watch: Including the final two games of last season, Georgios Masouras has scored four goals across his last four competitive Olympiacos matches – all four arrived before HT. For Ludogorets, Elvis Manu has been their recent dangerman with three goals in three competitive appearances – two arriving after the 70th minute.Recent Stats:
- Olympiacos Piraeus’ form in last 5 matches: WWWWD.
- Ludogoret’s form in last 5 matches: WWWWW.