Samaras: We played better than Cote d'Ivoire
The Greece striker admits his mind went blank as he swept home a last-gasp spot-kick to send his side into the World Cup knockout phase
Greece striker Giorgios Samaras has admitted that his mind went blank when taking what proved to be the decisive penalty against Cote d'Ivoire.
The out-of-contract forward won a spot-kick in stoppage time, with the score poised at 1-1, and fired his effort past Boubacar Barry to seal the three points his side needed to reach the last 16 of the World Cup.
Greece 2-1 Ivory Coast
Samaras has admitted that he has no memory of the dramatic events, telling reporters: "I don't remember anything. It's a blackout. I was totally focused on putting the ball in the net.
"I don't know about the role of luck in this match, but we played better than Cote d'Ivoire. I think we had chances to finish the match, but the woodwork thought otherwise. We never stopped believing we can qualify until the last minute."
Greece now face Costa Rica in the last 16, and he hopes that progression to the knockout stages of the competition for the first time will give supporters back in Europe a lift.
"I'm really proud of the team and I'm really proud of what we did, and I hope we give some joy and happiness to the people back home."
Rest of Europe
World Cup 2014