Youth League: Olympique Lyonnais get their own back against Juventus (0-1)
The under-19s put in a huge performance on Wednesday, taking control of the match from the outset, and winning thanks to a lone strike from Houssem Aouar. It's a win that puts Olympique Lyonnais firmly on course to qualify for the knock-out stage.
Having been beaten in their last two Youth League matches, Lyon were keen to make a comeback on Matchday 4. What's more, Cris and Joël Fréchet's players were dead-set on taking revenge for the three-nil defeat they suffered against Juve on their home turf at the Groupama OL Training Center in Décines.
The positive approach of the two teams was evident from kick-off and the early attempts came from the visitors: Juve had two huge chances fall to Czech forward Roman Macek, who hit the post in the seventh minute. Olympique Lyonnais responded shortly afterwards, creating three decent chances for Houssem Aouar. After coming off second-best in two one-on-ones with the Juve keeper, the Lyonnais number ten finally opened the scoring after collecting a contested ball in the middle of the park and slotting home between Del Favero's legs (32' 0-1). The match grew yet more intense, and in the 41st minute Myziane Maolida saw his attempt cleared off the line by a defender then, on the counterattack, the Swiss Andi Zeqiri missed the goal by a few centimetres.
The pace dropped off somewhat in the second half but, despite being in front, OL continued to play attractive football and more than once almost made it 2-0: Yann Kitala saw his shot saved miraculously by Del Favero (68') then Houssem Aouar came close with a header from a corner. Juve barely got close to Anthony Racioppi's goal, except for a couple of shots from Berauatto, both saved by the Lyonnais keeper.
This win puts Lyon in a strong position to qualify, particularly given the other results in group H - FC Sevilla and Dinamo Zagreb taking a point each from a draw. But the Spaniards, on top with seven points, are a step ahead of Juventus and Olympique Lyonnais. Matchday 5 will see the OL under-19s travel again, this time to Croatia to play Zagreb on 22 September.
Cris (OL coach): "We played very well. We saw warriors out there tonight; our players gave everything they had. We knew we were playing to qualify and we showed our true colours. We have a talented team. When everybody plays together, we are strong. But there are two games to go, so let's not get carried away. We'll continue to prepare for the matches against Dinamo Zagreb and FC Seville."
. TEAMSHEET .
Venue: Juventus Training Ground in Turin.
Youth League (J4, Gr.H) : Juventus Turin-OL 0-1 (0-1)
Referee: Ognjen Valjic (BIH). Attendance: about 500
Goals: Aouar (36’) for OL.
Yellow cards: Rogelio (43’), Zeqiri (59’), Beruatto (70’) and Caligara (81’) for Juventus; Cognat (55’), Kitala (59’), Brault-Guillard (60’) and Aouar (90') for OL.
Juventus Turin: Del Favero - Beruatto, Muratore (cap.), Andersson, Rogerio - Bove (Caligara, 61’), Macek, Kastanos, Clemenza (Morselli, 69’)- Zeqiri, Leris (Mosti, 82’). Coach: F. Grosso.
OL: Racioppi - Brault-Guillard (cap.), Ngwabije, G. Kalulu, Gaspar - Devarrewaere, Cognat, Aouar (Almeida, 90') - Maolida, Gouiri (Ouazine, 73’), Kitala (Grossreider, 85'). Coaches: Cris and J. Fréchet.