Bruno Genesio: Anatomy of a Crash-and-Burn

It made for a pitiful sight. On Saturday afternoon, Bruno Genesio presented himself at a press conference to announce his decision – no longer Jean-Michel Aulas’ decision, but his – that the 2018/2019 season would be his last at the helm of Olympique Lyonnais.

Genesio was all alone; there was no Jean-Michel Aulas, who had had his back for years on end. Against Dijon and Nantes, it seemed even the players were no longer behind their coach anymore.

As for the supporters, many had abandoned him long ago, and with good reason. Lyon had the second-highest operating budget in Ligue 1 at €285M, but you would not know it by watching them play. On Saturday evening, they found themselves in third place deservedly behind Lille.

Genesio’s press conference brought to an end a will-they-or-won’t-they saga surrounding his future at the club. It was a drawn out story, unworthy of a club of Lyon’s stature – a tale that, much like Genesio’s own tenure, should have ended far earlier than it did.

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The revolving door comes to a halt?

Benzema, Lacazette, Martial, Tolisso, Ben Arfa, Umtiti, Fekir, Aouar, Lopes etc… Okay! We get it! The Olympique Lyonnais academy conveyor belt’s ability of producing quality footballers, gift wrapped and ready for a high level international career is well documented, and to quote Moussa Dembélé #IfYouDontKnowNowYouKnow! Around the academy is an incredibly successful recruitment cell led by OL’s secret weapon and chief recruiter Florian Maurice, whose ability to still find hidden gems at low prices in this modern age of football is both astounding and vital to the OL DNA and its ongoing success.

Despite only Anthony Lopes and Nabil Fekir left at the club (Jordan Ferri is currently out on loan to Ligue 1 club Nîmes Olympique), supporters and onlookers have become accustomed to the revolving door of exciting young talent passing from the academy through to the first team. Youngsters at the club are drawing more and more attention from supporters and the footballing world alike as the next big talents.

The strong generation of Ferri, Lacazette, N’jie, Grenier, Fekir, Umtiti, Tolisso, Benzia, Plea and Lopes, most of whom came into prominence during Rémi Garde’s tenure as coach between 2011-14 came to fruition during the 14-15 season under new coach Hubert Fournier. Fournier himself greatly benefited from the trust that Garde was somewhat forced to place on the academy players coming through at the time. Since these players came through, there had been a frustrating gap in quality between the reservists and the first team causing OL to rely more on canny and smart recruitment. Now it’s far different, the current crop of u19 players (not to mention a handful of 15/16 year olds), are already starting to knock on Genesio’s front door for a first team place.

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It’s here! Lyon Offside’s first ever podcast!

You asked, we listened.

The Lyon Offside team finally got together and put together an English language podcast. Sam (@OZOL1950), Arianna (@AScavs), Nick (@NicholasMamo), and Rabeeta (@OffsideBeet) take a stab at covering both the men’s and women’s teams, their upcoming matches, and everyone’s unfavorite coach, Bruno Genesio.

If there are any topics you’d like us to cover, just tweet at any one of us, or you can send an email to LyonOffside@gmail.com.

Have a listen to our very first podcast below!

Topics covered:

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Coupe de la Ligue Quarterfinals: Lyon vs. Strasbourg in the Less Popular Cup

After last Saturday’s Coupe de France clash against amateur 5th division side Bourges Foot, where Lyon struggled for a hard fought victory (no, seriously), Bruno Genesio and his merry men are setting their sights on that other French Cup.

Since winning the league is out of the question, and progressing in the Champions League is just as unlikely, Genesio is determined to win one of the cups. While the Coupe de France is more prestigious, he’ll take anything he can get, even if it’s the slightly more lame Coupe de la Ligue.

The reason Lyon are so desperate? The club hasn’t won any hardware since 2012.

Oh wait, they did win the Eusebio Cup. My bad.


Tuesday, January 8th, 2019
Parc OL, Lyon
21:00 CET (3 PM EST)

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Memphis: Respect by the Numbers

The infatigable Memphis Depay had run France ragged for ninety minutes. The Dutch were comfortable in the lead, and comfortable on the ball. Memphis took it a tad too literally; with a hint of arrogance, he brought the ball to a standstill and stood on it. A few seconds later, the Netherlands won a penalty and Memphis converted with a cheeky panenka.

Nobody complained. The numbers had won him impunity.

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It’s Pep against Pep: Manchester City vs. Lyon Preview

From a purely sporting standpoint, even the most optimistic Lyon fans expect Manchester City to win on Wednesday. In all honesty, this preview should end right here because the game should be a foregone conclusion.

But if there’s one team on this planet that never does what they’re supposed to, it’s Lyon. They lose when they’re supposed to win, they win when they’re supposed to lose. I can’t remember the last time when everything went as planned.

So who knows what Wednesday will bring. After losing to a bunch of relegation-level teams these past two months, Lyon are ready to face one of the best teams in the world.

Let’s go.


Wednesday, September 19th, 2018
Etihad Stadium, Manchester
3 PM EST (21:00 CET, 20:00 UST)

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