Ma­jor boost for Lyon

> La­cazette come­back gives French side hope ahead of Juve clash

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SPORTS -

OLYMPIQUE LY­ON­NAIS will be hop­ing that the re­turn of tal­is­manic striker Alexan­dre La­cazette will boost their Cham­pi­ons League cam­paign when they host Ju­ven­tus in Group H early to­mor­row morn­ing.

Lyon lost their sixth game in 12 out­ings in all com­pe­ti­tions when they were beaten 2-0 at Ligue 1 lead­ers Nice on Friday but they started the match with­out La­cazette, who made his come­back from a five­week in­jury lay­off mid­way through the sec­ond half.

With­out the France in­ter­na­tional, Lyon have failed to score in three of their last four matches.

“We are in a dif­fi­cult sit­u­a­tion, we must get back to work, be strong and get back on our feet,” said keeper An­thony Lopes.

Lyon are third in the group with three points, one point be­hind lead­ers Ju­ven­tus, who geared up for the clash at Parc OL with a 2-1 win against Udi­nese in Serie A.

Ju­ven­tus striker Paulo Dy­bala, who scored both goals on Sat­ur­day, said the Lyon trip was the start of a run of fix­tures that could have an im­por­tant bear­ing on their sea­son.

“Next week will be tough but the whole month ahead of us will be cru­cial in the con­text of the sea­son,” he said with Juve set to face Serie A fix­tures against AC Mi­lan, Sam­p­do­ria and Napoli in quick suc­ces­sion af­ter the Lyon game.

Serie A lead­ers Juve could be with­out de­fender Gior­gio Chiellini for later’s match but coach Mas­si­m­il­iano Al­le­gri is not pan­ick­ing.

“Chiellini (got) in­jured (shortly be­fore Udi­nese) ... it shouldn’t be any­thing se­ri­ous for him and we’ll see whether he’ll be fit for Lyon,” he said.

With the re­turn of La­cazette, Lyon will play their favoured 3-5-2 for­ma­tion with Na­bil Fekir part­ner­ing his fel­low France in­ter­na­tional up front.

Full­back Rafael, who is also back from in­jury, will play on the right flank for Lyon, who could be tired, hav­ing played most of the game at Nice with 10 men.

“We need to re­cover men­tally and phys­i­cally. We were pe­nalised against Nice but also for the Juve game be­cause we played more than an hour with 10 men,” said Lyon coach Bruno Ge­n­e­sio. “It will be a fac­tor.”

Sevilla, who are sec­ond in the group be­hind Juve on goal dif­fer­ence, travel to Di­namo Za­greb, who have lost both their open­ing en­coun­ters. – Reuters

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