Can Europa League help Lyon re-discover domestic form?

Nabil Fekir Lyon
After a bright first-half to the season, Lyon have stuttered in Ligue 1 in the recent weeks.

After consecutive defeats to Bordeaux, Monaco and Rennes, Les Gones have slipped out of Champions League places in Ligue 1. They have lost five games all season, and it’s incredible that three of them have come in last three games.

As things stand, Lyon are placed fourth in the league table with 48 points, four points behind Marseille in third. Anything besides Champions League football would be considered a failure this season, and now it’s a tall order for them to rediscover their form and make up the ground in the league.

Lyon travel to 16th-placed Lille next Sunday, and this game is a must-win fixture for them if they hope to move back into the top-three.

However, the European football gets underway this week, and Lyon also have a Europa League tie at home against Villarreal on Thursday.

It will be interesting to see what kind of approach manager Bruno Génésio adapts in Europa League. With the domestic season on the verge of a collapse, will Génésio play a full-strength side against Villarreal?

Will he consider this game as an opportunity for his side to get their season back on track or a distraction for his domestic ambitions? If Lyon can win these two games, this week could prove to be a turning point for their season.

Lyon have conceded nine goals in their last three league games, and it’s of utmost importance for them to stop leaking goals in the coming weeks.

Marcelo has picked up a total of -2 points in last three games, and Jeremy Morel has done even worse with -5 points. Right-back Kenny Tete, who has been very effective going forward, has managed -6 points during the same time. All these players must pick up their performances to give their side any chance of winning games.

On the attacking front, Mariano has been Lyon’s top striker this season. However, he is also going through a dry spell as he has scored only one goal in his last six league appearances, resulting in a total of three points.

Nabil Fekir is Lyon’s best-performing player this season with 79 points. However, he hasn’t managed to add any points in last three games. He has contributed to 22 goals (16 goals, 6 assists) this season, but he has drawn a blank of late.

It’s now-or-never time for Lyon, and it’s imperative that key players raise their levels this week.

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