Olympiacos to face European giants in Champions League group stages
Olympiacos were drawn into the most difficult group in club history on Thursday as they will face Barcelona, Juventus, and Sporting Lisbon in this year’s UEFA Champions League.
Olympiacos were handed the worst possible draw for this year’s UEFA Champions League group stages. The Greek side will face Italian champions Juventus, Messi’s Barcelona, and the toughest team from the “weakest pot” (pot 4), Sporting Lisbon. Olympiacos will really have to pull off one of the biggest surprises in club history to contest a place in the knockout stages of the competition.
Olympiacos’ primary goal will be to finish third in the group (will likely fight with Sporting Lisbon) to continue in the Europa League after the new year. However, the Erythrolefki will not go down without a fight as the club has proven to defy the odds in the past.
Prime examples include when Olympiacos fought with Atletico Madrid and Juventus until the final matchday in the 2014/15 group stages for a place in the next round and it was a similar story in the 2015/16 group stages, when Olympiacos was drawn against Arsenal and Bayern Munich.
Olympiacos will also face their former coach and fan favorite, Ernesto Valverde, who currently is the man in charge at Barcelona. The Spaniard will make a return to the Karaiskakis when Barcelona travel to Greece on matchday 4.
Olympiacos will begin their campaign at home to Sporting Lisbon before traveling to Turin to face Juventus on matchday 2. Then, back to back matches await against Barcelona for matchday 3 and 4. Olympiacos will travel to Lisbon on matchday 5 and will conclude their group stage campaign at home to Juventus on matchday 6.