Olympiakos shock Bremen
Greek side net first away win in Champions League
By Lewis Rutledge. Last Updated: 03/10/07 11:03pm
Almeida: On target for Bremen
Olympiakos won their first UEFA Champions League away game at the 32nd attempt as they came from behind to stun Werder Bremen 3-1.
The German side did not look convincing even when Hugo Almeida fired them into a first-half lead, and Olympiakos took advantage with a stunning performance after the break.
Ireoklis Stoltidis, Christos Patsatzoglou and Darko Kovacevic all found the target as Olympiakos moved on to four points in Group C and left Bremen bottom with no points.
Bremen hammered Arminia Bielefeld 8-1 in the Bundesliga on Saturday but offered little evidence that they were in form during the early exchanges.
Almeida did force a fine save out of Antonis Nikopolidis after breaking through the Olympiakos backline, but it was the Greek side who showed the greater urgency.
Former Portsmouth striker Tresor Lomana Lua Lua posed problems with his pace, while Luciano Galletti was only denied by an instinctive stop from Champions League debutant Christian Vander.
Almeida breaks the deadlock
One reason why Olympiakos have never had success on their European travels before is their disorganised defence, which was found wanting again on 32 minutes.
Almeida was unmarked at the back post as Daniel Jensen clipped a clever ball over three defenders, and had time to pick his spot and coolly fire Bremen into a 1-0 lead.
Brazilian playmaker Diego started to pull the strings for Bremen as they enjoyed their best spell of the match just before half-time, but Olympiakos survived without further damage as Nikopolidis stood up tall to keep out Jensen.
Nikopolidis also saved Almeida's angled drive at the start of the second half, before Olympiakos mounted their fightback.
Predrag Djordjevic and Lua Lua had already had goals disallowed for offside when Kovacevic's shot was spilled by Vander and Stoltidis followed up to equalise in the 72nd minute.
Per Mertesacker had a chance to put Bremen back in front but directed his header straight at Nikopolidis, and Olympiakos went ahead moments later as Patsatzoglou smashed an unstoppable shot into the top corner with the help of a deflection off Mertesacker.
Olympiakos refused to sit on their lead and added a third three minutes from time when Vander again failed to hold onto a shot, this time from Raul Bravo, and Kovacevic pounced on the rebound.
|Werder Bremen||Team Statistics||Olympiakos|
|1||1st Half Goals||0|
|6||Shots on Target||12|
|6||Shots off Target||3|
UEFA Champions League
Wed 3rd Oct - Group C
W Bremen1 - 3Olympiakos
Lazio2 - 2R Madrid
Wed 3rd Oct - Group D
Celtic2 - 1AC Milan
Benfica0 - 1Shak Donetsk
Wed 3rd Oct - Group B
Valencia1 - 2Chelsea
Rosenborg0 - 2Schalke
Wed 3rd Oct - Group A
Besiktas0 - 1FC Porto
Liverpool0 - 1Marseille
UEFA Champions League Group A
UEFA Champions League Group B
UEFA Champions League Group C
|1||Paris St Germain||6||13|
UEFA Champions League Group D
|3||FC Viktoria Plzen||6||3|
UEFA Champions League Group E
|4||FC Steaua Bucuresti||6||3|
UEFA Champions League Group F
UEFA Champions League Group G
|2||Zenit St. Petersburg||6||6|
UEFA Champions League Group H