VIDEO: Kouka’s late strike sends Olympiacos into Europa League last 16

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VIDEO: Kouka's late strike sends Olympiacos into Europa League last 16

- Yasmine El Tohamy - Egypt international Ahmed Hassan Kouka has scored a late winner to guide Olympiacos to the round of 16 of the UEFA Europa League.

The Greek side had qualified for the first knockout round of the Europa League after finishing third in their Champions League group behind Manchester City and Porto, and ahead of Marseille.

They were drawn against Dutch giants PSV Eindhoven, with the first-leg taking place at the Karaiskakis Stadium in Piraeus, Greece, in which the hosts won 4-2.

Going into the return-leg in Eindhoven with a two-goal advantage, Eran Zahavi turned the table in the opening 45 minutes with two goals, putting the Dutch on the brink of qualification.

Desperate for scoring, Olympiacos manager Pedro Martins brought on Ahmed Hassan Kouka in the 80th minute and his faith in the Egyptian paid off.

With just two minutes left, Konstantinos Fortounis found Youssef El-Arabi with a brilliant cross; however, the Moroccan’s header was denied by PSV keeper Yvon Mvogo, before the rebound was turned in by Kouka.

The goal is Kouka’s 11th of the season in 23 games across all competitions and his second one in Europe this season after a late winner against Olympique Marseille in the Champions League.

Moreover, the goal put Olympiacos 5-4 ahead on aggregate and secured their spot in the round of 16 of the Europa League alongside the likes of Manchester United, AC Milan, and Mohamed Elneny’s Arsenal.

The draw for the round of 16 will be held on the 26th February, at 13:00 CET. The first legs will be played on March 11, a week before the second legs.

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