To be fair, any of the teams Lyon could have drawn in the Round of 16 would be a difficult challenge, but I really didn’t want to see Eric Abidal’s face again. Now I’ll have to suffer through multiple pre-match interviews where he’ll talk down about his old Lyon days. Can’t wait.
It was announced yesterday that Lyon academy graduate Jordan Ferri has left on loan to join Nîmes Olympique. While not a fresh face out of the academy, he has only known Olympique Lyonnais as a professional player. It’s a new chapter for Jordan Ferri in a career that has never reached the heights of other famous OL graduates.
It’s only October, but the hospital wing of Olympique Lyonnais is running out of beds. While injuries are bound to happen, having so many at once is a headache for any manager. Fortunately, it’s not red alert just yet, but Lyon’s medical staff will be extra vigilant because any additions to the below list will definitely push the men’s, women’s, and reserve teams towards a crisis.
Nabil Fekir: This is the big one. He sustained an ankle injury in the early minutes against PSG, and while he tried to play on, he went down a few minutes later and signaled for a substitution. As we all know, OL’s fortunes went kaput after that.
All things considered, the injury is relatively minor. He has been ruled out for a month and is expected to miss the games against Nîmes, Angers, Bordeaux, as well as both games against Hoffenheim. This is a heavy blow, as we’ve seen the team struggles when he is not on the pitch.
We ask just one thing from international friendlies: No injuries. But you can’t always get what you want, and Amandine Henry’s early exit with a clavicle injury has cast a pall over the break for les Fenottes. But like Henry’s French teammates, we too will soldier on with a recap of big wins for les Bleues, frustration for England, and rising hopes for Canada and the Netherlands.
So far, 2018 has been a good year for Lyon players. OL Féminin has long been recognized as the preeminent force in women’s football while OL’s Academy is perpetually ranked as one of best in Europe. Lyon’s dominance in both sectors has been rewarded with a host of nominations, with the likes of Houssem Aouar, Ada Hegerberg,Amandine Henry, and Tanguy Ndombélé getting the attention they very much deserve.
France Football, the publication that gives out the Ballon d’Or, one of the most prestigious individual awards a footballer can win, is finally launching editions for women and youth. About time, too! See below for details.
Kante, Touré, Pogba…These are just some of the names to whom Tanguy Ndombélé is compared, which helps people with limited knowledge about him to have a sense of who this next starlet from France is and could be in the future. But to all Olympique Lyonnais supporters and Ligue 1 followers who have had the pleasure of watching him tear through midfields for the past year, it comes as no surprise to see this midfield monster being linked to almost every top side in Europe, as well as receiving his first national team selection.
Regardless of the injury to Corentin Tolisso, it was only a matter of time until Deschamps could no longer ignore Ndombélé’s all conquering performances for OL. As the trend typically goes, people outside of France don’t bat an eyelid at Ligue 1 unless their clubs are linked to the “next *insert cliché name here” star from France. It’s a shame because unlike so many French midfielders before him, Ndombélé is a completely different entity, a player that deserves more credit than merely being linked to a big money move abroad. Ignore the comparisons in the upcoming months and years because soon, we are not going to be talking about the next somebody but the first of a new wave of all action French midfielder.
It’s October, which means another international week. While the world is still in recovery from this summer’s World Cup, two major tournaments are on the horizon: the Women’s World Cup and UEFA’s U21 Championship. In addition, the newly created League of Nations (whatever that is) will be in full swing.
It’s pretty much the same cast of characters, with two major exceptions: Tanguy Ndombélé has made the jump from France’s U21s to the senior team. It’s well deserved, though Didier Deschamps made it clear that Ndombélé’s inclusion is the direct result of Corentin Tolisso’s injury. The other big news is Jason Denayer’s return to the Belgian NT after two years, which is welcome after his outstanding performances the past two months.
Keep your fingers crossed that both will remain fixtures for their national teams.