Fiorentina vs. Olympiacos in the Conference League final: what time and how to watch | With five Argentines on the field

Fiorentina vs. Olympiacos in the Conference League final: what time and how to watch | With five Argentines on the field
Fiorentina vs. Olympiacos in the Conference League final: what time and how to watch | With five Argentines on the field

With three Argentines on the Fiorentina side and two on the Olympiacos side, This Wednesday will be played the final of the Conference Leaguethe third European continental tournament in order of importance behind the Champions League (Real Madrid and Dortmund define this Saturday) and the Europa League (Juan Musso’s Atalanta thrashed Exequiel Palacios’ Leverkusen).

The final will start at 16 at the Agia Sofia stadium, also known as OPAP Arena, belonging to AEK Athens and with capacity for 32 thousand spectators. Consequently, Olympiacos, from the city of Piraeus, 10 kilometers from the Greek capital, will run with a certain advantage. Television will be provided by ESPN.

Fiorentina, from Bati to Nico

In Fiorentina, which has just lost last year’s final against the English West Ham (2-1), the Argentine National Team players are expected to start Nico González and Lucas Martínez Quartain addition to the ex-River forward Lucas Beltran. The ex-Rosario Central midfielder would wait for his chance on the bench Gino Infantino.

González, former Argentinos Juniors 26 years old, he is the only one who played in last year’s final and is having a great season again after missing the World Cup in Qatar due to injury. The left winger wears 15 goals and 5 assists in 42 games this season (two goals and two assists in ten games in the Conference).

For his part, former River Martínez Quarta also scored twice in the competition (eight games) while Beltrán is the team’s top scorer with four (eleven appearances). The forward, a candidate to play in the Olympic Games for the Under 23s, has 10 goals in 49 games this season. Infantino, meanwhile, did not have much experience and played only eight games for the club, just one as a starter.

Fiorentina, a famous team in Argentina after the footsteps of Passarella, Bertoni and Ramón Díaz in the ’80s and Batistuta in the ’90s, has a title at the European level: the 1961 European Cup Winners’ Cup. That was the first edition of that competition that lasted until 1999 and was played by the national cup champions of the previous season. Previously, The purple team managed to reach the final of the European Cup, today’s Champions League, but fell 2-0 against Di Stéfano’s Real Madrid. He was also runner-up in the 1962 Cup Winners’ Cup, the 1990 UEFA Cup (now the Europa League) and the aforementioned Conference last year.

Olympiacos, without chains

In the other side, Olympiacos has just hit a home run by eliminating Dibu Martínez’s Aston Villa with an overall result of 6 to 2 and five goals from the same player: the Moroccan Ayoub El Kaabi. The 30-year-old striker is one of the revelations of the year and Fiorentina coach, Vincenzo Italiano -what a surname-, He referred to the African with some misfortune: “We have chains to stop him. Joking aside, we know it comes with great self-confidence. “He and the team have done a great job.”

The other goal of the series was scored by Santiago Hezze, of a high level in his first season in Europe. The ex-Huracán midfielder, 22 years old, has played 49 games for the Greek club and that was his only goal celebration. The left back is also a starter at Olympiacos. Francisco Ortega. The former Vélez, 25 years old, is also in his first European season and has played 37 games, without goals but with four assists.

Olympiacos is led by Spaniard José Luis Mendilibar, Europa League champion coach with Sevilla last year. As for the club and its European journey, it has no titles and as the best result he managed to reach the quarterfinals of the Champions League in 1999.

The journey in the Conference League

It is worth remembering that this It is only the third edition of the Conference League, an innovation with a very good impact on European football. The first was won by Mourinho’s Roma in 2022 and then by West Ham in 2023.

Regarding the present, the Fiorentina it qualified by finishing eighth in last year’s Italian league. He defeated Rapid Vienna in a previous round (0-1 in Austria and 2-0 in Florence) to advance to the group stage. They won their zone undefeated (three wins and three draws) and escaped from the round of 16. In the second round he eliminated Maccabi Haifa (4-3 in Israel and 1-1 in Florence), in the quarterfinals at Viktoria Plzen (0-0 in Checa and 2-0 in Florence in extra time) and in the semis at Witches (3-2 in Italy and 1-1 in Belgium).

He Olympiacyouthird in the 2023 Greek Super League, came from the Europa League (3rd in its group) and had to play in the round of 16 against Ferencvaros (1-0 in Piraeus and 1-0 in Hungary). Then he left on the road Maccabi Tel Aviv in an improbable series (1-4 in Greece and 6-1 in Serbia, since it could not be played in Israel), at Fenerbahce (3-2 in Türkiye, 0-1 in Greece and 3-2 on penalties) and at Aston Villa (4-2 in England and 2-0 in Piraeus).

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