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Match Report: Lyon 2-1 Lille

Tuesday 13th March 2012
Dejan Lovren was sent off but the ten men of Lyon managed to hang on to a 2-1 lead to end a five game winless streak against Lille at the Stade de Gerland.

After a shock midweek Champions League exit to Apoel Nicosia, Lyon responded by closing the gap on Lille and that all important third place to only four points.

Alexandre Lacazette and Lisandro Lopez gave the home side the lead before Aurélien Chedjou Fongang pulled one back just before half time. The second half was quieter and although Lovren was sent off, Lyon held on for the win.

Lyon knew coming into the game that a loss would leave them 10 points behind Lille in third and put an end to any chance of qualifying for next season's Champions League.

Spurred on by midweek's disappointment, it only took Lyon 12 minutes to find the lead. Left back Mouhamadou Dabo was the furthest forward when Maxime Gonalons found him with a ball over the top. Dabo then surged down to the byline and played an inviting cross for Lacazette, who made no mistake with the header.

Lille then failed to deal with a swift Lyon counter attack. The visitors didn't manage to clear the ball on the edge of the box and Lopez, who was unmarked, curled past the outstretched Mickaël Landreau.

Poor defending then allowed Lille back into the game on the stroke of half-time. Benoit Pedretti's corner was headed in by Chedjou to give the visitors some hope.

Hugo Lloris was then called into action to prevent the equaliser. Nolan Roux couldn't find the back of the net and it was just as well for Lyon, who would have felt harshly done by as the ball had bounced of Franck Beria's arm.

With Sir Alex Ferguson in the stands it was Eden Hazard who was eager to impress, and it was his burst of pace which brought the red card. The winger burst down the left and Lovren could only chop him down with a badly timed tackle to earn a second yellow card.

Lyon did well to limit Lille's chances but Tulio missed the big chance towards the end, firing wide and allowing the home side to take all three points. The result leaves five teams within four points of each other fighting it out for the third Champions League spot with eleven games remaining.
Glenn Noble

Total articles: 20

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