Once again it is proved that without Alexandre Lacazette, Lyon just can not score. Today he was a crucial link that was missing.
Just to be clear, Sevilla absolutely deserved their victory. They had much more possession of the ball, they were much more dangerous in front of visitors goal, and they have been much more offensive.
If Luciano Vietto had a little more concentration, Lyon would have gone home with at least 3 goals in their net.
But let’s begin from the start.
The first half was not so good for spectators, apart from two chances that Olympic Lyon produced, and we might say the were goal chances. At 11th minute Nabil Fekir made everyone at “Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan” quite for a second, as he unleashed strike that hit the crossbar. After crossing two players, from the middle of the box, some twenty meters from goal, he just didn’t have luck to score, and it would be some goal. By far the best player in his team had one more chance in 37th minute when he made a shot from right side to the left bottom corner of the goal, but he missed a bit.
25 minutes into the game, another chance for Lyon. Maxwell Cornet escapes defense in the left side of the box, he shoots low and hard to the left bottom corner of the goal, but Sergio Rico, probably the man who saved Sevilla today, saves this one, and this might be a turning point of the match. After this save, home team manage to make some balance in the middle. Although it was a poor game, in the rest of the first half, with a lot of duels and fouls, Sevilla came back into the game.
The second half was something different. 60% of ball possession, 15 goal attempts, 6 shots on goal , these are the best indicators of Sevilla’s game.
Samir Nasri showed his potential, he was everywhere, a constant threat for Lyon defense. His passes and crosses made many problems for visitors, the penalty was made on him, very, very good game for the French player.
The goal came quickly, the 53rd minute of play, N’Zonzi centers the ball, Vietto heads it back in front of empty goal, and Wissam Ben Yedder easily heads the ball into the goal. In the next attack, Tolliso could score an equalizer, but Sergio Rico saved his shot easily in the middle of the goal.
Vietto then had a chance in 65th minute, when he came one to one with the goalkeeper, but Antonio Lopez did an excellent job, saving the shot.
Minutes later penalty was called for Sevilla. On one deflected ball both Nasri and Gaspard went for it, but Lyon’s defender came in harsh and brought down Nasri.
Vietto placed the ball on the spot, took the shot and missed it far up high. Terrible , terrible shot by Sevilla striker.
Some minutes after that Lyon head coach, Bruno Genesio, makes substitutions, Valbuena and Kalulu are in. Thate proved to be the right move because the game became more interesting and dynamic. First in75th minute Sevilla had a chance Escudero is denied by the Lopes, minute later Tolisso on the other part of the pitch hits the crossbar !!
From the edge of the box he puts the brilliant shot, Sergio Rico was already helpless, but unluckily for Lyon, no goal.
Then again Sevilla has a chance, Vietto is in the box, gets the ball but again he doesn’t score. This was a bad day for 22 years old Argentinian striker, who will have to forget it as soon as possible. Probably one of the worst in his young career.
Sevilla managed to slow down the pace of the game, and Lyon didn’t have any chances until the end of the game. Sevilla had one more when Steven N’Zonzi had one good shot at the end of the regular time, from a distance but Antonio Lopez saved it.
The probably best player in visitor’s team is Antonio Lopez, he was good today, and without him, it would be questionable whether it would finish with the same result.
Sevilla can be satisfied by the result of the game and for one more thing. We saw Sami Nasri in a good shape, as he is supposed to be. We can’t forget and we must not, that he is one of the best football players in the world, he is one of the most gifted players of all time.
This could be a huge boost for him, and with him in top form Sevilla van be a pretty nasty team.
Lyon without Lacazette isn’t good up front. Respect to the whole team but without him, they are an average team. Their chance is home ground, and they didn’t count on this game to win that is for sure, but at home direct duel between these two teams is probably going to decide which one of them will be second. And if Lacazette is ready, they will have a chance.