Olympiacos vs Arsenal
Date: Wednesday 9th December, 2015
Time: 19:45 BST
Venue: Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium, Piraeus
Arsenal have it all to play for in the final round of this season’s Champions League matches, needing to win by a scoreline other than 1-0 or 2-1 away from home against the Greek champions in order to progress to the second round.
Arsene Wenger has never failed to make it past the first group stage of this tournament this millennium but faces his toughest task yet after seeing his side lose three of their opening four matches. You can get good odds on the Gunners winning this Champions League match if you’re as confident as we are.
Arsenal are 21/20 to win on the night and a tasty 29/10 to win this game by two goals or more. If you are expecting goals, like we saw at the Emirates, over 4.5 goals is 5/1 and Arsenal to win with over 4.5 goals in the game is 7/1.
If you simply fancy Arsenal to come out all guns blazing and get the minimum two goals that they will need to score on the night, Wenger’s side are 10/11 to score at least twice.
The Gunners’ convincing 3-0 thrashing of Dinamo Zagreb in their previous group game suggests it’s certainly possible for the Premier League side but the injuries mounting up make it even more difficult.
Olympiacos have a decent home record too and have won all 12 of their domestic league matches to start the season. Their 3-2 victory at the Emirates back in September give them the upper hand too.
The home side were thrashed 4-0 by 10-man Bayern Munich only a fortnight ago and were beaten 3-0 at home by the German champions in this campaign. Both results will surely spur Arsenal on.
Konstantinos Fortounis is the main dangerman for Olympiacos, whilst former-West Brom reject Brown Ideye is doing a decent job in Greece.
Olympiacos team news
The experienced duo of Alejandro Dominguez and Giannis Maniatis are both ruled out of this match and have not featured much at all this season for the Greek champions. Centre-back Alberto Botia is a doubt though and would be a big loss to Olympiacos.
Arsenal team news
Arsene Wenger has a whole host of injuries to deal with. The latest is that Alexis Sanchez and Santi Cazorla are the latest visitors to the treatment room. A big blow for a side that will need to score at least twice on the road.
Francis Coquelin, Jack Wilshere, Danny Welbeck, Mikel Arteta and Tomas Rosicky are all sidelined.
Olympiacos vs Arsenal possible starting line-ups
Olympiacos: Roberto; Omar Elabdellaoui, Alberto Botia, Dimitrios Siovas, Arthur Masuaku; Luka Milivojevic, Pajtim Kasami, Felipe Pardo, Konstantinos Fortounis, Seba; Brown Ideye
Arsenal: Petr Cech; Hector Bellerin, Per Mertesacker, Laurent Koscielny, Nacho Monreal; Aaron Ramsey, Mathieu Flamini, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Mesut Ozil, Joel Campbell; Olivier Giroud
Olympiacos vs Arsenal: Key Stats
33% – Olympiacos have lost only three of their nine home matches versus English opposition (W3, D3).
75% – Arsenal won three of their four away games in last season’s competition but have lost both of their away games in this campaign.
83% – Olympiacos have won 15 of their 18 competitive matches this season, losing only to Bayern Munich (twice).
Prediction: Olympiacos 1-3 Arsenal