Arsenal in peril as Gunners experience Greek tragedy against Olympiakos
Of all the stories we can associate with Greece, this is one that will fast become legend, that not even Socrates could have predicted.
While the country’s economy may have crumbled, Olympiakos stood tall in a modern day amphitheater and performed like gladiators, disposing of Arsenal in a 3-2 thriller.
After a relatively quiet half an hour, the match burst into life when the Greeks brought a corner routine straight off the training ground, with Felipe Pardo firing in from the edge of the area to stun the Gunners.
However, two minutes later, Arsenal, 33/1 with Coral to win the competition, responded when Theo Walcott forced an equaliser after a good build-up, however there would be another twist to the plot.
Conceding another corner, the ball was whipped back in, only for David Ospina to suffer a shocking error of judgement, and palm into his own goal, leaving Arsene Wenger to rethink his team talk.
Arsenal dominated the opening 20 minutes of the second half as they time and again fired a barrage of shots at goal, though the visitors had their very own Hercules in goalkeeper Roberto, who pulled of save after save to keep the Gunners out.
Finally, Alexis Sanchez popped up free in the area to meet a Walcott cross, heading it into the corner to add to his hat-trick last time out and it appeared Arsenal would push on and win the game.
Barely a minute later, the Greeks struck again, after great work from former Leicester City player Esteban Cambiasso released Pardo, who invited substitute Alfred Finnbogason to fire in leaving the hosts well and truly stunned.
Wenger’s men then proceeded to lay siege to the Olympiakos goal, though more heroic goalkeeping and defending kept the guests in front, despite the introduction of Aaron Ramsey and former Olympiakos striker Joel Campbell. If he had scored that really would have been dramatic irony, though that’s a term associated to playwrights. This was stuff of legend.