The fifth round of games in the Europa League group stage saw Olympiacos and PAOK losing on Thursday, but both teams hope to still go through, if results go their way in the last round of matches next month.
Olympiakos lost 1-0 to a much superior Real Betis.
The Pireaus’ team started off strong in Seville over the first half, however Betis got the better of the Greek defense at the other end, earning a penalty that Sergio Leon took; Olympiacos keeper Jose Sa parried to safety, before the Spaniards grabbed a goal through a Sergio Canales shot from outside the area on the 39th minute.
In the second half Olympiacos was significantly inferior to its host and could have conceded more goals. Now the Red-and-Whites still need to beat AC Milan by 2-0 or 4-1 in Piraeus in two weeks’ time to advance to the knock-out stages of the competition.
As for PAOK, they played almost the entire game at Stamford Bridge with a man’s deficit, and predictably suffered a 4-0 defeat to Chelsea.
Yevhen Khacheridi was presented with a red card at the 7th minute of the match, reducing PAOK to defensive efforts only, unable to prevent Olivier Giroud from grabbing a first-half brace.
In the second half Chelsea scored two more goals with Callum Hudson-Odoi and Alvaro Morata, to compound the Greek league leader’s misery.
Even so PAOK will go through if on December 13 it beats BATE in Thessaloniki and Chelsea downs Vidi in Budapest.
The fifth round of Europa League also saw two Cyprus teams winning; Apollon Limassol beat Lazio 2-0 and AEL Larnaca won 2-1 over Zurich.