Karl Toko Ekambi, Jerome Boateng, Lyon

Lyon looking for Bordeaux bounce-back

Publish on 03/12/2021 at 10:21


Jerome Boateng and Olympique Lyonnais are looking to get back to winning ways against Girondins de Bordeaux at the Matmut Atlantique on Sunday evening.

Girondins de Bordeaux - Olympique Lyonnais


- Kick-off: 19:45 GMT




One of the favourites for outright glory at the start of the season, and sixth as recently as Round 12, Lyon have stuttered in recent weeks, losing two of their last three games to slip to 10th in the table on 22 points.


Wednesday's 2-1 reverse to Stade de Reims was particularly galling for Peter Bosz's side, though. Les Gones had 10 shots from inside the box compared to their opponents' five, and completed 628 passes against 364 on the way to concluding the game 63 per cent of possession.


Hurt Lyon


None of that changed the outcome, though, Hugo Ekitike snatching a last-minute winner for the visitors, pouncing on a rare fumble from OL goalkeeper Anthony Lopes.


Away from their domestic travails, Lyon have sailed through to the UEFA Europa League knock-out stages. Eight points clear with a game to play in Group A makes Thursday's clash with Rangers a dead rubber, and they can be expected to be at full strength against Bordeaux.


Watch: Highlights of Lyon's 2-1 loss to Reims



"We have the data to judge a players' fitness and it's objective," Bosz explained, seeking to dispel the notion that such a flurry of games has impacted his side. "We see the physique of the player, how he runs, how he sprints, and if they're able to play two games in a week.


"We started with the same team for the last two league matches, so it wasn't too much for them. And look at Malo Gusto, he did 47 sprints against Reims, that's incredible! And it was his only his third game."


Mucho Gusto


Gusto, 18, has been deputising at right-back for Léo Dubois in recent weeks, the club captain having pulled his hamstring whilst on international duty with France, and is likely to start again given his effervescence.


Sinaly Diomandé recently joined longer-term injury absentees Jeff Reine-Adélaïde and Lenny Pintor on the sidelines with a sprained ankle, so Boateng will continue at the heart of the OL defence with Jason Denayer.


If Lyon have wobbled domestically, Bordeaux have been in freefall. Eight places and nine points worse off than their visitors, les Girondins have dropped 11 of the last possible 12 points since beating Reims 3-2 in Round 12.


Watch: Highlights of Bordeaux's 5-2 loss to Strasbourg



Sunday's hosts haven't beaten their opponents since January 2018, when Malcom was among those on target in a 3-1 home win. Recent history has been similarly unkind, Bordeaux on the wrong end of a 5-2 thrashing at RC Strasbourg Alsace on Wednesday. Despite that humbling, coach Vladimir Petkovic insists he is the man to get them back on track.


'Right man for the job'


"I have my share of responsibility because, over the last 10 days, we've been working on marking and how not to suffer from crosses. In training, when we explain things, everything is clear, but during the match, faced with quality players like Strasbourg have, we ended up making simple mistakes.


"I still think I'm the man for the job. It has nothing to do with style but rather individual quality and knowing how to position yourself in relation to your teammates. The players' desire isn't lacking, the intentions are there, but it's more a question of concentration."


Petkovic remains without injured trio Laurent Koscielny, Josh Maja and Paul Baysse as he look to plot a way past Lyon, while Javairo Dilrosun is perhaps the player pushing hardest for a return to the starting line-up.


Possible teams


Bordeaux: Costil; Kwateng, Mexer, Gregersen, Mangas; Dilrosun, Otavio, Onana, Oudin; Adli; Elis


Lyon: Lopes; Gusto, Boateng, Denayer, Emerson; Caqueret, Guimaraes; Paqueta, Aouar, Toko Ekambi; Slimani