Olympiacos 1-1 Wolves: Pedro Neto pegs back ten-man hosts

Substitute Pedro Neto salvaged a draw away to an Olympiacos side that played an hour with ten men.

Pedro Neto celebrates his leveller for Wolves away to Olympiacos
Pedro Neto celebrates his leveller for Wolves away to Olympiacos Getty Images

It is all to play for in England after ten-man Olympiacos held on for a point in their UEFA Europa League round of 16 first leg against Wolves.

OLYMPIACOS vs WOLVES: AS IT HAPPENED

Match at a glance

The home side made all the early running, albeit without creating a clear chance, but lost the initiative with the departure of Rúben Semedo, who was sent off for bringing down Diogo Jota when he was the last man. That sparked Wolves into life, only for the English side to fall behind soon after the restart when Youssef El Arabi turned in Guilherme's cross.

The hosts were soon pegged back as Pedro Neto's shot from a well-worked free-kick took a huge deflection off Andreas Bouchalakis to level matters. Wolves pushed for a winner, but Olympiacos stood strong to leave things evenly poised.

Youssef El Arabi celebrates his opening goal for Olympiacos
Youssef El Arabi celebrates his opening goal for OlympiacosUEFA via Getty Images

View from the stadium: Vassiliki Papantonopoulou

Two errors were the story of the match for Olympiacos – Semedo's foul that led to his dismissal and the opening of the wall that allowed the equaliser in. Wolves were far from their best tonight, though, and the Piraeus outfit held on for a draw. A valuable result for the Greek side considering they played for more than an hour with a numerical disadvantage. This result and the match-up of the two teams means the tie is wide open ahead of the second leg.

Reaction

Giorgos Masouras, Olympiacos winger: "We are satisfied with our performance and I believe we were the better team and could have held on for victory, but Wolves got lucky with their equaliser. Now our rivals have got their away goal and have a slight advantage, but we will travel to England to do our best, as always."

José Sá, Olympiacos goalkeeper: "It's a positive result, taking into account that we played for more than an hour with ten players against a very powerful side. We will fight to qualify in the second leg. In the previous round, we proved that we can qualify even after losing the home leg."

Pedro Neto, Wolves forward: "I tried to help the team and do my best and with ten guys it was difficult; they closed in behind and now we go to the second game. We knew that they would get towards their goal; we had to move it faster and we created chances in the second half. I think we could have shot more times, but now we focus on the next one."

Conor Coady, Wolves captain: "It was a tough game; it got harder when they had ten men. We needed to move the ball faster, but it's a draw away from home. They are a good team; they have played in the Champions League this season. We have scored an away goal which is important and we look forward to it."

Rúben Semedo walks off after his red card on 29 minutes
Rúben Semedo walks off after his red card on 29 minutesGetty Images

Key stats

  • El Arabi has scored 24 goals for Olympiacos this season.
  • Olympiacos are nine home games without a win in the UEFA Europa League knockout stage (D5 L4).
  • Ten of Wolves' last 12 goals away from home have been scored in the second half.
  • The English side are yet to open the scoring away from home in 2020, a run of nine games.
  • Wolves have scored in all eight of their UEFA Europa League away games this season.

Line-ups

Olympiacos: José Sá; Elabdellaoui, Rúben Semedo, Ba, Tsimikas; Guilherme, Bouchalakis, Camara; Masouras (Cissé 33), El Arabi (Fortounis 73), Valbuena (Gaspar 84)

Wolves: Rui Patrício; Boly, Coady, Saïss; Doherty (Pedro Neto 46), Rúben Neves, João Moutinho (Dendoncker 85), Rúben Vinagre (Podence 79); Traoré, Jiménez, Diogo Jota