Olympiacos Return to SEF for Historic Second Leg
The Erythrolefki will try to repeat history by winning another European title at the famous Peace & Friendship Stadium (SEF).
Olympiacos’ men’s volleyball team will face Bunge Ravenna at 20:30 local time in the second leg of the final of the CEV Challenge Cup. They will try to overcome a 1-3 deficit from the first leg to win the third European trophy in club history. Instead of playing at their usual home court, the Melina Mercouri Indoor Hall, the club has decided to play at the much larger Peace and Friendship Stadium, otherwise known as SEF.
Instead of the playing in front of 1,500 fans, they will have the chance to play in front of more than 13,000 at SEF. SEF currently hosts Olympiacos’ men’s basketball team. In the past, it hosted volleyball at the 2004 Summer Olympics, the 1994 Volleyball Men’s World Championship, 1995 Men’s European Volleyball Championship, and many European club matches and competitions, among other sporting events as well.
Historically, this venue has seen many big moments in Olympiacos volleyball, and fans of the club will hope that tonight’s game is no different. In 1996, the stadium hosted the final of the CEV Cup Winners’ Cup, in which Olympiacos defeated Germany’s Bayern Wuppertal 3-2. The match took place on the 71st anniversary of Olympiacos’ formation, and 20,000 fans packed SEF to cheer on their team to victory. This would be the first European title won by Olympiacos in any team sport.
In the subsequent years, Olympiacos won European trophies not only in men’s volleyball, but also men’s basketball, men’s water polo, and women’s water polo. It is safe to say that the historic volleyball win in 1996 at SEF started this Olympiacos European dynasty that spread to other sports.
In 2005, the men’s volleyball team returned to SEF for the final of the CEV Top Teams Cup (the successor of the CEV Cup Winners’ Cup). Olympiacos would cruise to 3-0 victory over Ortec Nesselande from the Netherlands. 15,000 fans piled in to watch their team win the second European trophy in their history. Now, 13 years later, they will do the same as they hope to see their beloved club capture their third European title in men’s volleyball.