Lacazette nets first hat-trick as OL wallop Lille
By D. Crossan
Alexandre Lacazette scored the first hat-trick of his Ligue 1 career as Olympique Lyonnais thrashed LOSC Lille 3-0 at the Stade de Gerland.
Olympique Lyonnais 3-0 LOSC Lille
Lacazette, left out of the France squad by Didier Deschamps this week, served a timely reminder of his finishing capabilities with goals in the 39th, 45th and 84th minute to move onto seven for the season. Only OM's André-Pierre Gignac, with nine, has more in Ligue 1 this term. The international break comes at the wrong time for OL who have collected 11 points from their last five Ligue 1 fixtures. They succeeded in breaking down a usually watertight Lille defence as Vincent Enyeama conceded more goals in one early evening than he had in the eight Ligue 1 matches prior to the visit to OL.
LOSC injury crisis
A glance at the teamsheet gave a clue that Lille would find life difficult as René Girard, shorn of eight injured first-teamers, was only able to name six substitutes. LOSC had been in action three days earlier at Wolfsburg in the Europa League and fatigue was another contributory factor, although that should not detract from the quality of the OL performance.
Nolan Roux nodded over the first half-opportunity for Lille after Anthony Lopes misjudged a Sébastien Corchia cross but after that it was all OL. Lacazette and then Henri Bedimo both shot straight at Enyeama, though the respite proved only temporary.
Lacazette gets ball rolling
Six minutes before half-time Nabil Fekir, just called into the France Under-21s set-up for the first time, played the ball in behind the visiting rearguard for Lacazette to chase. The forward shrugged off Franck Béria and produced an accomplished finish over Enyeama. Girard was sent to the stands for his protests over Lacazette's challenge on the LOSC defender.
On the stroke of the interval Lacazette flirted with the offside line as he headed home a Yoann Gourcuff free-kick from the right. The injury-plagued Gourcuff, starting a Ligue 1 game for the first time this season, had his first assist since December 2013.
LOSC brought on Ronny Rodelin and Divock Origi at the interval and enjoyed more possession in the OL half without creating much. The closest they came was when Lopes had to claw away a Djibril Sidibé cross from the left entering the final ten minutes.
Lacazette claimed the match ball in the 84th minute. Maxime Gonalons, the home captain, played a precise ball out of defence to Clinton N'Jie, the sub, to lead the counter. N'Jie squared for Lacazette, who took several touches, waiting for both Marko Basa and Enyeama to commit themselves before rolling the ball into the unguarded net.