UEL: Beşiktaş: 4 Olympiakos: 1

Updated: March 16, 2017

For the first time since 2003 Beşiktaş have reached the quarter finals of the UEFA Europa League after a sounding 4-1 victory over Greek champions Olympiakos, 5-2 on aggregate.

Despite the final scoreline being quite convincing, the match didn’t go quite as easy as you might suspect following a Vincent Aboubakar red card after just 39 minutes for a headbutt. At that point Beşiktaş were already 2-1 up however after a phenomenal start which saw them take the lead after just 11 minute via Vincent Aboubakar, thanks to a splendid Anderson Talisca assist. Ryan Babel had doubled the scoreline after just 22 minutes and put the Black Eagles firmly in the driver’s seat as they were 3-1 up on aggregate at that point, but the Greeks scored on their first real chance after Tarik Elyounoussi’s volley took a deflection on Adriano to leave Fabri without a chance after 31 minutes.

Beşiktaş lost control of the game a bit following that goal, while they had absolutely dominated the opening half hour, but it wasn’t until the sudden Aboubakar red card in the 39th minute that the crowd – and players – truely got nervous.

At halftime the scoreline remained 2-1 but Beşiktaş would certainly have their work cut out for them in those second 45 minutes.

Surprisingly both coaches made no changes and Olympiakos seemingly opted to remain patient under the guise of “that goal will come”. But after a strong opening 15 minutes from the Greeks, in which they created two dangerous opportunities, Beşiktaş slowed down the game and slowly regained their momentum.

As the second half went on it were the Black Eagles and not the Greeks who slowly grew more and more in the match, which led to the third goal after 75 minutes, again it was Ryan Babel who beat Nicola Leali with a splendid strike, although the Italian goalkeeper probably should have done better.

Olympiakos still didn’t give up and tried to press forward in search of their second goal, but created very little danger. And merely two minutes after having come on for Ricardo Quaresma in the 82nd minute Cenk Tosun iced the game after a tremendous link up with Anderson Talisca; playing the ball in to Talisca, who drew the attention of the defence before playing a perfect ball in to Cenk who finished it off briliantly: 4-1 after 84 minutes and Beşiktaş through to their first European quarter final since 2003.

Beşiktaş players celebrate their victory and qualification to the quarter finals of the UEFA Europa League!

Who was your man of the match?


Interesting facts:

  • Beşiktaş have managed to qualify into quarter finals in European competitions for the third time in their history.
  • Cenk Tosun has been involved in a goal in every other 74 mins in Europa League since 2014-15 (510 minutes, 6 goals, 1 assist).
  • Ryan Babel has scored a brace in a competitive game for the first time after 838 days (vs Caykur Rizespor in 29 November 2014).
  • Vincent Aboubakar has scored the earliest goal for Beşiktaş in European competitions this season (9:49).

Stadium: Vodafone Arena

Official: Michael Oliver (ENG)

Beşiktaş XI: Fabricio Ramirez; Gökhan Gönul – Matej Mitrovic – Dusko Tosic – Adriano Correia; Atiba Hutchinson – Oğuzhan Özyakup (60′ Necip Uysal) – Anderson Talisca (90′ Gökhan İnler); Ricardo Quaresma (82′ Cenk Tosun) – Vincent Aboubakar – Ryan Babel

Reserves: Tolga Zengin, Matej Mitrovic, Andreas Beck, Necip Uysal, Gökhan İnler, Cenk Tosun

Head coach: Şenol Güneş

Olympiakos XI: Nicola Leali; Aly Cissokho – Manuel da Costa – Panagiotis Retsos – Diogo Figueiras; Alaixys Romao (76′ André Martins) – Kostas Fortounis – Estéban Cambiasso (67′ Marko Marin); Georgios Manthatis (56′ Seba) – Karim Ansarifard – Tarik Elyounoussi

Reserves: Stefanos Kapino, Alberto Botia, Alberto de la Bella, Marko Marin, André Martins, Athanasios Androutsos, Seba

Head coach: Vasilis Vouzas

Goals: Vincent Aboubakar (11′), Ryan Babel (22′, 75′), Tarik Elyououssi (31′), Cenk Tosun (84′)

Yellow cards: Seba (62′), Manuel da Costa (67′), Alaixys Romao (71′),

Red card: Vincent Aboubakar (39′)

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Kaan Bayazit

Editor-in-chief at Beşiktaş International
Freelance sports writer specialized in Turkish football and Beşiktaş. Co-host of the Black Eagles podcast. Frequently featured in World Soccer Digest Japan and many other international media outlets. Following Turkish football for close to two decades. Proud father to Aedin.
Kaan Bayazit
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