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ASSE - OL : More than a derby (this Sunday, 21h)

Published on 06 October 2019 at 8:00 AM
ASSE - OL : plus qu'un derby (ce dimanche, 21h)
This Sunday, Stephanois and Lyonnais will cross swords in the 119th derby between the two clubs. Both having started poorly in the league, the two enemies have the opportunity to revive their fortunes in a match as symbolic as it is important.

The context

As well as being geographically close, ASSE and OL have several further points in common at the beginning of the season. The first is that these two teams have both changed coaches this summer, and indeed twice that for Saint-Etienne, with the failure of Ghislain Printant, replaced at the end of the week by Claude Puel, a former OL manager. The second is that the beginning of 2019-2020 will certainly not remain a shining moment in their annals. With very similar balance sheets (2 wins, 3 draws, 3 defeats and 13th place for OL, against 2 wins, 2 draws and 4 defeats and 20th place for ASSE) ones not necessarily impressive at that, time is running out for two clubs that frequently occupy the top of the ranking. This derby is therefore well-timed to be a potentially violent blow to the rival.

 

The challenge

Having broken the series of seven games in all competitions without a win Wednesday in Leipzig (0-2), OL now aspires to do the same in Ligue 1. They can take hope in the fact that at this start of the championship the table is exceptionally tight (13 points separate the leader, the PSG from bottom side Dijon) and a series of victories could quickly place it in a place more appropriate to its standing. Winning in Leipzig was a tour de force, but Sylvinho and his players must use this match as a base to build a lasting and effective way of playing.

 

The opponent

Ironically, the "Greens" have similarly lost their color at the beginning of the season. Jean-Louis Gasset left the position of coach to Ghislain Printant, his former assistant, this summer, who was himself replaced by Claude Puel Friday. With only two small successes in eight games, ASSE are last in the championship and have lost what was its strength last season, namely an oiled collective, talented individuals (M'Vila, Ruffier, Perrin) and leaders who take responsibility (Khazri, Debuchy). If things have been better in their last two outings (0-1 win in Nîmes and a 1-1 draw against Wolfsburg in the Europa League), the road back to where they would imagine they would be is still long for the club. Nevertheless, the derby is not a match like the others and a team's form in the moment does not matter. Only the thirst for victory counts.


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