Masculins / UEFA Champions League

OL 1-1 Zenit: A frustrating start to the Champions League

Published on 18 September 2019 at 10:02 AM
OL - Zenit : les Lyonnais espéraient mieux pour leurs débuts en Champions League... (1-1)
OL will have ended the night frustrated after being held to a 1-1 draw by Zenit in the Champions League opener, following a run of three domestic games without victory.

3’. Lopes saves from Douglas Santos.
21’. Azmoun tries his luck from distance, with Lopes tipping the effort round the post.
22’. Kone's dangerous cross evades everyone.
24’. Dembele's shot from the edge of the box goes over the bar.
36’. Memphis' corner is headed wide by Marcelo.
41’. After a one-two with Dzyuba, Azmoun fires past Lopes to open the scoring. 0-1.
44’. Memphis takes aim but his shot lacks the power to beat Lunev.
50’. Memphis wins a penalty and steps up to convert from 12 yards. 1-1.
58’. Reine-Adelaide shoots from distance but it's too high.
61’. Reine-Adelaide links up well with Dubois before sending his attempt narrowly off target.
70’. Lopes makes a point-blank save to deny Ozdoev.
79’. Memphis gets through but is again denied by Lunev.
84’. Rakits'kyy deflects Dembele's effort behind for a corner - the keeper looked beaten!
85’. Cornet bursts clear and shaves the crossbar with a powerful effort.



Following some disappointing results after a blistering start in the opening two games of the league season, OL needed to get back on track with a victory. And what better stage to do it than the greatest competition in club football? Lyon, who were presented with a winnable Champions League group, first faced Zenit Saint Petersburg and wanted to give their fans something to cheer. But, despite a good start from Sylvinho's men, it was the Russian side who took the lead through Azmoun. (41’, 0-1).


Having conceded just before half-time, Lyon needed to react quickly - and that's exactly what they did. Determined not to spoil their return to such a prestigious competition OL equalised shortly after the break through Memphis Depay, who won a penalty then converted it himself. (pen 50’, 1-1). The home side seemed to be moving in the right direction but, as in the first half, the momentum was gone almost as soon as it had appeared. With little movement inside the final third, Les Gones instead relied on moments of individual skill, unfortunately without success. The final whistle signalled a third successive draw. Not the worst result, but it could have been better.


It's frustrating because we couldn't find more from our resources to get the win. We can't dominate our opponents. We missed a cutting edge, even though Jeff (Reine-Adelaide) did a lot of good work. We didn't take enough risks, and that does not pay. The team was set up defensively, which worked because we were not put in danger except on rare occasions. But on the other hand, it removes a threat. It didn't feel like the team wanted to "wow" the crowd. There were no risks taken.




Groupama Stadium.

UEFA Champions League (Group G - game 1) : OL - Zenit Saint-Petersburg 1-1 (0-1).

Referee : Michael Oliver. (ENG) Attendance : 47,201.


Goals : Memphis (50') for OL. Azmoun (41') for Zenit.

Bookings : Koné (71') for OL. Azmoun (37'), Rakits'kyy (61'), Kuzyaev (70') and Shatov (87') for Zenit.


OL : A. Lopes - L. Dubois, J. Denayer ©, Marcelo G., Y. Koné - T. Mendes, L. Tousart, J. Reine-Adelaïde (M. Terrier, 85') - B. Traoré (M. Cornet, 77'), M. Dembélé, M. Depay. Coach : Sylvinho.


Zenit Saint-Petersburg : A. Lunev - V. Karavaev (O. Shatov, 78'), B. Ivanović ©, Y. Rakits'kyy, D. Santos - S. Driussi, W. Barrios, Y. Osorio, Y. Zhirkov (Kuzyaev, 64') - A. Dzyuba, S. Azmoun (M. Ozdoev, 46'). Coach : Sergueï Semak. 


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