Olympiakos won against Fiorentina in the Conference League

After a tough two halves, many were already expecting a penalty shootout. But then El Gabi threw himself onto a cross from the left in the penalty area and headed the ball into the goal. VAR checked for possible offside and finally awarded the goal. It was the 30-year-old’s 16th European Cup of the season.

Fiorentina qualified in the play-offs for the Conference League. At the end of August 2023, the Tuscan capital beat SK Rapid 2-1 over two legs. In the final, the eighth seed in Serie A had no luck.

The two teams were evenly matched from the start at the AEK Athens Stadium. The first dangerous decision of the game came from the Greeks. Fiorentina goalkeeper Pietro Terraciano had to intervene when Daniel Bodens (4th) shot from the penalty area. The Italians hit back immediately and even briefly celebrated a goal in the 10th minute, but it was ruled out for offside.

The game calmed down a bit before Fiorentina’s Giacomo Bonaventura had a double chance in the 21st minute: first his central shot from inside was easy prey for Konstantinos Tsolakis, who was saved seconds later by the Greek keeper. One-on-one against the 34-year-old. In the closing stages, Moroccan El Gabi appeared in the Violet penalty area for the first time. Olympiakos collided with goalie Terraziano and was penalized with a foul whistle.

The second 45 minutes were more chaotic. Several interceptions or random actions and losses of the ball characterized the events on both sides. The intensity was high in the stands and on the pitch. But in the 69th minute Fiorentina’s Christian Guame had no chances to shoot in the penalty area. The Ivorian didn’t hit the ball inbounds, but Tsoulakis still had to stretch and cleared a touchdown for a corner.

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For the Greeks, Vicente Iborra (80th) latched on to a cross in the penalty area, his header missing the left post. Teammate El Gabi (84′) also missed a free kick cross – the famous “lucky punch” didn’t work. The clock ticked down relentlessly, including seven minutes of overtime, and the seemingly inevitable extension was confirmed shortly before midnight local time. In this one, Terraziano blocked a long-range shot from Steven Jovetic (96th) and Jonathoniko was denied by Solakis (110th) at the other end. And then there was Greek tragedy for “Viola.”

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