Who said that Lyon was not a welcoming city? Olympique Lyonnais version 2022 players apply to contradict received ideas. In their great stadium, they stretched their chins – with a generosity that no longer surprises anyone – at West Ham’s Englishmen who only hoped that it would knock them out.
Tenth in Ligue 1, the protégés of President Jean-Michel Aulas, who had demanded the sacred union of their supporters before the match, can (almost) put away their crampons or, in any case, put an end to their last ambitions. Europe will no longer serve as a hiding place for one of the club’s worst seasons since the Aulas era. Winner 3-0 in the second leg of the quarterfinals, West Ham will play the semifinals of the Europa League on Thursday, April 14, against Eintracht Frankfurt, Barça’s top scorer.
While OL had dominated the first leg with a draw (1-1), while the Rhône club had the best chances for thirty minutes, the fever of coach Peter Bosz’s men allowed the Londoners to score two goals in six minutes just before the break. .
First thanks to a header from Craig Dawson, after a corner offered by the defense due to a misunderstanding between Jason Denayer and Castello Lukeba (38me, 1-0). Then, a few minutes later, Declan Rice took his time adjusting the substitute goalkeeper, Julian Pollersbeck (44me2-0).
Previously, the locals had tried to raise their level in the European Cup, which this season has gone quite well for them. Karl Toko Ekambi had found the publication of the 5me minute of play at 10me minute, Moussa Dembélé inexplicably missed his attempt two meters from goalkeeper Alphonse Areola. Then, in a Malo Gusto cross, Toko Ekambi made another blunder, taking the ball with his thigh (26me).
The entry into play of the Brazilian Lucas Paquetá (controlled in extremis negative by Covid-19) after the break and that of his compatriot Tetê (recently recruited from the Donetsk Ukrainians due to the war), did not allow the trend to be reversed. West Ham drove the point home as soon as they returned from the locker room. A poor restart from Lyon allowed Antonio to find Jarrod Bowen, who tricked Pollersbeck with a shot outside the box (48me, 3-0). OL’s reactions were more one of desperation than of a true desire to reverse this catastrophic situation.
Prior to this thrashing, Lyonnais’ Europa League campaign had ended with six wins and two draws. In the previous round, they had thwarted the odds against favorites Porto. Against a West Ham team, not very impressive but much more effective defensively and offensively, OL sank at the worst moment.
Apathetic and mentally fragile, Olympians often show their flaws by displaying their talent only very rarely. The club’s Dutch manager, seven-time French champions in the 2000s, Peter Bosz, seems to have run out of solutions. He almost never managed to instill his attacking and dynamic style into his team. “I’m very disappointed. I think we started well, but we didn’t scoreanalyzed the former coach of Ajax Amsterdam. We conceded a goal from a set piece. And then it was difficult. »
The seasons pass and the results continue to deteriorate despite the boasts of Mr. Aulas, who obviously refuses: the decline of a club he took over as president in 1987. Lyonnais’s last trophy? A Coupe de France in 2012. Since then, a few European bright spots, a Europa League semi-final in 2017 and a Champions League semi-final in 2020, are not enough to hide the shortcomings.
In this gloom, Peter Bosz tried to remobilize his troops, thinking about the goal of a new European classification: “We have to qualify for the European Cup. We have to make an exceptional season finale, otherwise we don’t deserve it. » This requires a victory on Sunday against Bordeaux.
Incidents in the stands
Meanwhile, discontent grows in the stands. Long patient, Lyon supporters had pinned their hopes on this Europa League that no French club has ever won. On Thursday night, they supported their troops to the last. During the meeting, in the 70me minute, the North Bend ultras had just thrown out a chant that sounded like a warning: “Shake your butt, shake your butt. »
From the final whistle, the two corners turned to a more virulent display of their anger. The north bend opened hostilities, attacking the security barriers and the butlers. So the south corner also jumped into the fray. After a few minutes, the police appeared on the premises. The fights continued for more than a quarter of an hour before fading away.
Before the game, at a press conference, Peter Bosz had laconically summed up what he expected: “In football the most important thing is to score goals and not concede them. Of course, we can go into the details of why we don’t score as much as we’d like, what we need to do better.He explained. I won’t go into all the details here, but with the players I will. Score and not concede goals. »
Obviously, the message was not detailed enough. OL is a club in bad shape. It is no longer possible to pretend. The Europa League is no longer to deceive. The end of the season promises to be long and turbulent.