Lyon had an unexpectedly easy encounter last round away at Guingamp (won 3-1). It is true that opponents played an entire half only in 10 but by the time they got the red card Lyon were already leading 2-0.
Lyon are solid in absolutely all departments and the only thing dragging them back is the lack of continuity in the play-maker position. Gourcuff gets injured twice per week and most of his time at Lyon has been spent on the bench. Ghezzal is a skilled player but at 22 he still lacks experience and this explains the oscillations of form. Malbranque is in the final stage of his career and doesn’t have much to offer nowadays.
In the absence of a real leader in midfield, forwards Fekir and Lacazette assume responsibility and are getting more involved in the game. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, only that they make twice the efforts and exhaustion can easily appear.
Hosts will have to do without suspended defender Rose.
Bastia had the misfortune of getting a red card early in the game (minute 20) and in these conditions they were no real match for PSG in the League Cup final (lost 4-0). Even in normal conditions the score could have been similar seeing that as of late Bastia reduced rythm and the level of organization (major strength until now) is only mediocre now.
Players are easily outplayed, they are getting nervous and make childish fouls no matter if they are inside the penalty box. In the last 3 rounds Bastia gave away 2 penalties and got 2 red cards.
There are still plenty of rounds to go and Bastia sit only 2 points above the relegation zone and in this rythm they will have huge headaches until the final round…
Guests will miss central defender Squillaci due to suspension.
Seeing that lately Bastia are making childish defensive errors and the organization level dramatically diminished Lyon shouldn’t have any problems in finding the net at least once.Lyon -1.5 at 2.14
UPDATE: Hosts welcome back midfielders Gonalons, Grenier and Fofana
Lyon: A.Lopes, Gorgelin – Bedimo, Zeffane, Umititi, M.Dabo, B.Koné – Tolisso, Ferri, Malbranque, G.Fofana, Gonalons, Grenier, Ghezzal – Fekir, Lacazette, Njie, M.Yattara
Bastia: Alphonse Areola, Thomas Vincensini – Drissa Diakité, Gilles Cioni, François Modesto, Florian Marange, Alexander Djiku, Julian Palmieri, Mathieu Peybernes – Guillaume Gillet, El-Hadji Ba, Romaric, Yannick Cahuzac, Ryad Boudebouz, Gaël Danic, François Kamano, Christopher Maboulou – Brandao, Giovanni Sio