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Freiburg logo
Europa League | Group Stage
Nov 30, 2023 at 5.45pm UK
5 - 0
Gregoritsch (3', 8', 36'), Sildillia (42'), Doan (77')
FT(HT: 4-0)

Hezze (34'), Retsos (57'), Iborra (82')

Preview: Freiburg vs. Olympiacos - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's Europa League clash between Freiburg and Olympiacos, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Freiburg will be looking to secure their place in the Europa League knockout rounds when they welcome Olympiacos to Europa-Park Stadion for their penultimate Group A fixture on Thursday.

The visitors, meanwhile, know that they must claim all three points in Germany if they wish to keep their slim hopes of a top-two finish alive.

Match preview

Freiburg coach Christian Streich on November 9, 2023© Reuters

Since cruising to a 5-0 home victory over Backa Topola on matchday four of the Europa League, their biggest-ever win in European competition, Freiburg have since failed to win their last two Bundesliga matches, with a 3-1 defeat at RB Leipzig followed by a 1-1 home draw with SV Darmstadt 98 last weekend.

Lucas Holer scored his second home goal in as many games to cancel out an early opener from Mathias Honsak, but Freiburg were unable to net a winner in the second half and had to settle for a share of the spoils, extending their winless league run to four matches in the process.

Christian Streich's side have slipped to ninth in the Bundesliga table, eight points adrift of Leipzig in fifth place, but they are faring better in the Europa League this term as they have won three of their first four fixtures in Group A and sit joint top along with West Ham United.

Freiburg need to avoid defeat against Olympiacos to guarantee qualification to the knockout rounds, but a victory would boost their chances of finishing top of the group and progressing straight to the last 16.

Breisgau-Brasilianer will fancy their chances of success on Thursday as they have not lost any of their previous three European meetings with Olympiacos, including a 3-2 away victory in the reverse fixture two months ago courtesy of an 86th-minute winner from Maximilian Philipp.

Olympiacos coach Diego Martinez reacts on October 26, 2023© Reuters

Olympiacos experienced mixed fortunes on matchdays three and four of the Europa League as they followed up a 2-1 home win over West Ham with a slender 1-0 defeat to the Hammers in London, and their hopes of avoiding a second successive group-stage elimination are now hanging by a thread.

Diego Martinez's men currently sit third in Group A and, as things stand, will drop down into the Europa Conference League playoffs, but they need to beat Freiburg on Thursday and Backa Topola in their final group game to have any chance of securing a top-two finish.

Olympiacos responded to their defeat at West Ham by winning back-to-back Greek Super League matches against Asteras Tripolis and leaders Panathinaikos, beating the latter 3-1 on home soil last weekend.

Despite falling behind early on, an own goal from Marios Oikonomou restored parity before strikes from Kostas Fortounis and El Kaabi helped the Red and Whites complete the turnaround and move to within one point of leaders Panathinaikos, who suffered their first league defeat of the season.

Victory last weekend has given Olympiacos a much-needed boost, as they enter Thursday's contest having failed to win any of their last eight European away games, while they have lost 11 of their last 12 meetings with German clubs – the only exception being a 1-1 draw away against Freiburg in last season's Europa League.

Freiburg Europa League form:

Freiburg form (all competitions):

Olympiacos Europa League form:

Olympiacos form (all competitions):

Team News

Freiburg's Ritsu Doan celebrates scoring their fifth goal with Nicolas Hofler and teammates on November 9, 2023© Reuters

Freiburg's lengthy injury list includes Christian Gunter (broken arm), Lukas Kubler (broken toe), Daniel-Kofi Kyereh (knee), Max Rosenfelder (tendon), Maximilian Philipp (shoulder) and Yannik Keitel (groin), while Roland Sallai will have a thigh problem assessed ahead of kickoff.

Ritsu Doan will hope to retain his place on the right flank ahead of Kiliann Sildillia, while Noah Weisshaupt should keep his spot on the opposite wing.

Vincenzo Grifo has been directly involved in six goals in four Europa League matches this season (four goals and two assists) – the joint-most along with Bayer Leverkusen's Florian Wirtz – and the Italian attacker is expected to start in the final third with Holer and Michael Gregoritsch.

As for Olympiacos, Nicolas Freire, Jackson Porozo, Gustavo Scarpa and Doron Leidner all remain sidelined with injuries, while Giulian Biancone and Ivan Brnic – who both played against Panathinaikos last weekend – are ineligible for Thursday's game after being left out of the club's Europa League squad.

Martinez is expected to recall a number of first-team regulars to his starting lineup, including Francisco Ortega, Daniel Podence and Ayoub El Kaabi, the latter of whom scored twice against Freiburg in the reverse fixture.

Freiburg possible starting lineup:
Atubolu; Ginter, Lienhart, Gulde; Doan, Eggestein, Hofler, Weisshaupt; Holer, Grifo; Gregoritsch

Olympiacos possible starting lineup:
Paschalakis; Rodinei, Porozo, Retsos, Ortega; Alexandropoulos, Camara, Hezze; Podence, El Kaabi, Fortounis

SM words green background

We say: Freiburg 2-1 Olympiacos

Following the five-goal thriller between these two teams in Greece two months ago, another entertaining contest with plenty of goalmouth action could be in store on Thursday.

The onus is on Olympiacos to take the game to Freiburg and push them all the way in their quest to claim maximum points, but we believe that the hosts will ultimately do enough to secure a slender victory and book their place in the knockout rounds.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data

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Group A

QWest Ham650115
4Backa Topola60151

Group B

4AEK Athens61144

Group C

QSparta Prague631210
4Aris Limassol61144

Group D

QSporting Lisbon632111
3Sturm Graz61144

Group E

3Union SG62228

Group F

3M. Haifa61235

Group G

QSlavia Prague650115
4Sheriff Tiraspol60151

Group H

QB. Leverkusen660018

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