Sunday, March 26, 2017

Lacazette hits hat-trick and then hints at Lyon stay

SoccerNews in English Premier League 14 Aug 2016

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Lyon striker Anthony Lacazette enhanced his reputation as one of the most sought-after talents in European football with a hat-trick in his team’s opening 3-0 Ligue 1 win at Nancy – before stating he has unfinished business in French football.

Lacazette, who scored 23 times in all competitions last season, has been consistently linked with a move to Arsenal, while West Ham boss Slaven Bilic ruled his club out of the running this week.

The 25-year-old overcame a hip injury and got his present league campaign off to a stunning start, with Ligue 2 champions Nancy enduring a chastening top-flight baptism as Lyon bounced back from a 4-1 loss to Paris Saint-Germain in last weekend’s Trophee des Champions.

It means France international Lacazette now has 75 Ligue 1 goals to his name and after the match he told reporters of his desire to reach three figures – a target that would rule out a move during the current transfer window.

“I am happy here,” he said. “I would like to reach 100 goals in Ligue 1.

“We are very happy because the first match against a promoted team is always perilous. This is a very good week.

“Congratulations to [coach] Bruno [Genesio], for his talk has borne fruit. We are very happy and will enjoy tonight but we must keep our feet on the ground this season.”

Lacazette broke the deadlock after 33 minutes, firing home a rebound on the angle after Guy N’Dy Assembe saved Sergi Darder’s initial strike.

The Nancy defence made a hash of a long clearance from Lyon goalkeeper Anthony Lopes 11 minutes later and Lacazette needed no further encouragement to double the lead.

The hosts avoided further punishment until stoppage time when their tormentor in chief was on hand to round off a crisp team move and claim the matchball.

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