Osmanlispor vs Olympiakos Prediction, Preview and Betting Tips
After three games in Wednesday evening, Turkish capital Ankara will be first venue when the UEFA Europa League continues on Thursday, 23 February 2017. Osmanlispor and Olympiacos Piraeus are heading to the second decisive leg at the “Osmanli Stadi” from where only one can progress to the round of 16. Moreover, that’s an encounter which is not only a Turkish-Greek clash, but a fixture facing ambitious Osmanlispor vs experienced Olympiacos.
H2H Stats – Osmanlispor vs Olympiacos: Round one of the clash was a scoreless draw near Athens last Thursday. Olympiacos and Osmanlispor couldn’t score at the “Stadio Georgios Karaiskáki” in Piraeus as their toothless production left the whole intrigue for round two in Ankara. Match last week was the first ever Greek challenge for a newly founded team of Osmanlispor, so basically it was the beginning of their head-to-head history.
On other hand, before first match against Osmanlispor, Olympiacos had already played three encounters vs Turkish teams – a win and two defeats. To be even more exact not against Turkish teams, but against a Turkish team – Galatasaray. All of them were in group stages of both major UEFA competitions in first decade of the 21st century and in each occasion hosts were winners. Olympiacos won 3-0 in the 2003–04 UEFA Champions League groups and lost 1-0 in the reverse game. Few years later Galatasaray repeated the same score when both clubs met in the 2008–09 UEFA Cup group phase. That happened when each group was with five teams in, as all of them had to play two matches at home and two on the road.
UEFA Europa League: Osmanlispor vs Olympiacos 23.02.2017
First match in Piraeus will be mostly remembered with a red card shown to defender Bruno Viana. That happened in closing part of the game and Osmanlispor failed to benefit from a numerical advantage they had for around 20 minutes.
Greek team must work hard on improvement if they want to avoid worst possible scenario which can cost them too much. Portuguese coach Paulo Bento, who has been appointed as a successor of Víctor Sanchez in August, has all arguments to be worried for his job. Let us remind you that his predecessor Victor Sanchez led Olympiacos in only two games whereafter was relieved of his duties. That happened after both Champions League qualifiers vs Hapoel Be’er Sheva and fact that Olympiacos have been dropped out without scoring a goal.
Lack of patience by owner Evangelos Marinakis may prevail if Olympiacos fails to leave a mark in the UEFA Europa League, where their last success remains in October – a 4-1 home win vs FC Astana. It has been followed by two draws and a defeat which almost ousted Greek champions out of the competition. “The Red-Whites” finished second in Group B due to higher number of points obtained in direct matches against Young Boys.
In the meantime Olympiacos once again tops the Greek Superleague with comfortable lead, this time having 10 points over second-placed Panionios.
Osmanlispor started their European journey only couple of days after the UEFA Euro 2016 final – in first half of July. Since then “The Ottomans” are writing their history and squad led by Mustafa Resit Akcay can claim something remarkable, if they upset Olympiacos and reach the round of 16.
As a result of an extremely successful qualifying campaign Osmanlispor were drawn out in a very balanced group alongside Villarreal, FC Zürich and Steaua Bucuresti. Surprisingly or not, Osmanlispor finished on top of Group L and Turkish club has a realistic chance to advance. We believe their focus falls upon the open Europa League opportunity because Osmanlispor can hardly reach something greater in this season of the Turkish Süper Lig. Currently Osmanlispor occupies seventh position in the Süper Lig and thay are on 5 points behind Antalyaspor (5th).
Match Preview: Team News, Squads and Missing Players
“The Legend” suffered its first defeat in 2017 when on Sunday night AEK won the local derby against Olympiacos. The 1-0 was first loss for Greek champion since more than two months, when they lost 2-0 to APOEL in last day of the Europa League groups. Defeat from Nicosia was followed by a streak of 15 games without losing (10 wins, 4 draws) but all of them were in the domestic league, before renewing the UEFA Europa League action.
Alberto Botia became the second player of Olympiacos who has been sent off last week, but fortunately his suspension counts in the GSL and the Spaniard will feature against Osmanlispor. Botia is a key player for the Greek defense and his presence will be crucial, especially when Bruno Viana serves a suspension.
Viana will be replaced by someone from Manuel da Costa or Panagiotis Retsos, but fact that Paulo Bento used a centre-back duo da Costa-Botia against AEK, while Viana sat on the bench, hints about his intention.
Youngster Panagiotis Retsos started in midfield during first leg against Osmanlispor and he played a whole match. This time Paulo Bento should decide whether to pick Retsos next to his compatriot André Martins, or to rely on same defensive midfield duo he named against AEK – Martins/Alaixys Romao. Latter was replaced by another Greek youngster in face of Athanasios Androutsos, who also enjoyed to full 90 minutes against Osmanlispor in the midweek. It seems that Paulo Bento should choose between experienced foreigners or home grown youngsters when it comes to midfield.
Other players who started against Osmanlispor on Thursday but have been rested in the weekend are of left-back Aly Cissokho and striker Oscar Cardozo, whose absence arouse some questions. If Cissokho competes for a starting position at the left-back with Alberto de la Bella, Cardozo is not favourite to start when Nigerian attacker Brown Ideye has returned in the squad. Ideye is top scorer for Olympiacos and his presence on top of the attack secures much more movement than of Cardozo’s. With potential support of Seba, Tarik Elyounoussi and Kostas Fortounis from second position, Ideye is the one who’s expected to save Paulo Bento’s skin. Brown Ideye has been linked with a move to Tianjin Teda in the Chinese Super League. The only question is will he play against Osmanlispor. Whether he will or he won’t, we still find enough attacking quality in Olympiacos.
Tarik Elyounoussi, who also missed first EL 1/16 final, was back in the squad against AEK and we expect him on the right wing. Meanwhile goalkeeper Stefanos Kapino missed last two games for Olympiacos and Italian Nicola Leali may have to replace him once more.
Osmanlispor climbed to the 7th position in the TSL after showing enviable excellence on Sunday. “The Ottomans” were with four consecutive games without winning, either on all fronts or in the Süper Lig, before their visit to Adanaspor. It has ended with a stunning 1-5 win for Osmanlispor and Mustafa Resit Akcay can be really pleased with overall effort of his players.
Turkish manager will hope to witness more of the same on Thursday, but of course, we can hardly compare Olympiacos and one of the main relegation pretenders in the TSL – Adanaspor. However, Osmanlispor can draw extra inspiration from the solid home record they hold in Europe and that includes only one draw in six games – 2-2 vs Villarreal. All others are victories and in each of them Osmanlispor have kept a clean sheet. Most meaningful of them were surely the two group stage wins – 2-0 vs Steaua and same score vs FC Zurich.
Only injury concern of the Turkish side is winger Aminu Umar, who missed last four games for Osmanlispor. Nigerian winger can be replaced from another African pearl – Congolese winger Dzon Delarge. At the same time Mustafa Resit Akcay can be delighted by a strong competition for the position on top where except Raul Rusescu and Pierre Webo, winter signing Thievy Bifouma looks as a very likely starter.
And if defense looks as the most predictable zone in Osmanlispor, situation in midfield is also interesting. Experienced Brazilian midfielder Luiz Carlos, who joined the club in January, and Musa Cagiran, Mehmet Güven, Adam Maher are all in contention to play from the outset.
Betting Prediction and Possible Lineups
Like we highlighted in our introduction, we have an ambitious team of Osmanlispor against visitors from Greece who have slight advantage in our eyes. And if Osmanlispor can be boosted by playing at home, Olympiacos are the team that can qualify to the next stage even with a draw. Indeed, a scoring draw also does a brilliant work for “The Red-Whites”.
After a goalless first round in Piraeus we sincerely believe that both sides hold their offensive strength for match in Turkey and we will have some goals in Ankara. Osmanlispor will be motivated in front of the home crowd and it’s no secret there is something special when we observe an event that faces representatives from Turkey and Greece.
Olympiacos may regret for a missed home opportunity and Greek champions need to show some efficiency as well. We believe that odds for “Both teams to score” represent good value. So logically our betting prediction goes on “Both teams to score – Yes“.
Venue: “Osmanli Stadi”, Ankara.
Referee: Istvan Vad from Hungary.
Possible Lineups of Osmanlispor and Olympiacos
Osmanlispor FK: Zydrunas Karcemarskas – Tiago Pinto, Vaclav Prochazka, Numan Cürüksu, Avdija Vrsajevic – Mehmet Güven, Musa Cagiran – Dzon Delarge, Badou Ndiaye, Adrien Regattin – Thievy Bifouma. (4-2-3-1)
Olympiacos Piraeus: Nicola Leali – Aly Cissokho, Alberto Botia, Manuel da Costa, Diogo Figueiras – André Martins, Athanasios Androutsos – Seba, Kostas Fortounis, Tarik Elyounoussi – Oscar Cardozo. (4-2-3-1)