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Garde eyes Europa League ´opportunity´

Lyon manager Remi Garde believes Thursday’s UEFA Europa League tie with Vitoria Guimaraes is an opportunity to kickstart their season.

The Ligue 1 side have won just once in six games since bowing out of the UEFA Champions League at the qualification stages in August and sit ninth in the table.

However, after a 0-0 draw in their Europa League opener against Real Betis, Garde is hopeful Lyon can pick up their first win in Group I against the Portuguese side at the Stade de Gerland.

“This is an opportunity to return to winning ways. A new game, at home, this is an opportunity,” said Garde.

“It will be difficult to manoeuvre a team that has a lot of solidarity, that defends well, which is difficult to deceive.

“It will take a lot of accuracy in our attacks while being cautious about the speed that this team (Guimaraes) is capable of.”

Speaking ahead of Thursday’s clash, goalkeeper Anthony Lopes looked to dismiss talk of a crisis at the club following their disappointing recent form.

After starting their domestic campaign with two consecutive victories, Lyon have since fallen off the pace, but Lopes is not overly concerned.

“There is no crisis, we just lack a bit of success,” he said.

“It will come over the matches. Perhaps we just lack a bit of confidence but that will come, from tomorrow. I hope to take the three points to forge ahead as quickly as possible.”

Wed 2 October, 2013
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