Europa Cup, Kiryat Shmona – Olympique Lyonnais : the Israeli jobBy: Megame | October 4th, 2012
Forget the automn CL campaigns of old, Valencia in 2000, Barcelona in 2001 and 2007, Milan in 2002, Glasgow in 2003, Munich in 2008. All the glitter and gold is gone. The old stadium of Haifa, with barely one quarter of the seats occupied : that’s what Lyon faces today in this Europa League campaign.
So, given the club’s recent history against anonymous minnows (Nicosia, anyone?), one could expect a lack of interest from the players, and maybe the staff in meeting this club, pretty much unknown internationally. After all, Lyon started well their Europa League with a win against Sparta Prague; and, with the N°1 objective being not to lose track of the top of L1 despite the always perilous upcoming game on sunday against in-form Lorient, the Lyonnais might be tempted not to consider this Israeli trip as vital.
But Garde is a serious coach, and though he’s likely to rotate his team, he’ll try to do the job tonight and win. And, despite Lyon’s first defeat in Ligue 1 this season against Bordeaux, the team can be confident after a pretty remarkable game, pleasing if not winning due to a blatant lack of finishing skills.
In balance with Bisevac, Baky Kone will be associated with Lovren in central defense. Another surprise in the Lyon lineup: Rachid Ghezzal tenure alongside Grenier and Briand. These three players will have to support Lisandro, lone striker tonight. Also, Monzon gets the nod and has the opportunity to confirm the good things people say about him.
The Lyon team: Vercoutre – Réveillère, B.Koné, Lovren, Monzon – Gonalons, Fofana – Grenier, Briand, Ghezzal – Lisandro
Allez les Lyonnais!