Rennes vs Lyon preview

August 10, 2017
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

Youthful Rennes side did well to hold Troyes to a 1-1 draw in their opening fixture, but they will have bigger fish to fry this weekend.

Having enjoyed a resounding 4-0 triumph over Strasbourg last weekend, Lyon will fancy their chances of winning at Roazhon Park.

Despite having access to constant supply of fresh talent from one of world’s most famous youth academies, Rennes also began to spend money on talented youngsters who they believe could be sold for profit.

Les Bretons got rid of several experienced footballers this summer and splashed more than €25 million on Ismaila Sarr, Fait Maouassa and Hamari Traore.

This is the first time in quite a while Rennes have spent so much money on new players, which is enough to suggest they have the ambition to improve on eight-place finish from last season.

Head coach Christian Gourcuff will need some time to rebuild the squad, but the 1-1 draw with Troyes is enough to suggest they are on the right track.

The boss’s son Yoann Gourcuff has failed to recover from injury, while Morgan Amalfitano and Sanjin Prcic also miss out.

Fait Maouassa has shaken off a knee problem and he should start, whereas striker Firmin Mubele has recovered from a back injury.

Probable starting line-up (4-4-1-1): Diallo – Traore, Gnagnon, Bensebaini, Baal – Hunou, Andre, Bourigeaud, Maouassa – Sarr – Mubele.

Lyon are slowly returning to where they belong and after a fourth-place finish last term, les Gones are determined to finish in top 3 this season.

The club made some shrewd signings in the summer transfer window, with some €42 million getting them plenty of quality.

The likes of Mariano Diaz, Marcelo, Kenny Tete, Bertrand Traore, Fernando Marcal and Ferland Mendy all arrived at Parc OL, with some of them enjoying a pretty good start.

Les Gones, nonetheless, made a healthy profit as they cashed in on Mathieu Valbuena, Corentin Tolisso, Maxime Gonalons, Alexandre Lacazette, Maciej Rybus and Emmanuel Mammana, while Rachid Ghezzal and Christophe Jallet left on a free transfer.

This is enough to suggest that Lyon are weaker than last term, but that may not necessarily be the case, as witnessed by the 4-0 hammering of Strasbourg.

Buoyed by said win that saw Mariano Diaz and Nabil Fekir score a brace each, les Gones can now be backed at 2.00 (1/1) to defeat Rennes as well.

Ferland Mendy did not make the squad as he battles an ankle problem, but all other first team players are available for selection.

Probable starting line-up (4-2-3-1): Lopes – Rafael, Marcelo, Morel, Marcal – Darder, Tousart – Traore, Fekir, Depay – Diaz.

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