Reims were unbelievably lucky last round away at Lille (won 2-1). The opening goal arrived in min 70 (against the run of play) when a clearance hit winger Fortes in the face and bounced in the net…
Until that incident Reims were under complete domination. Not all credit goes to their defense for keeping a clean sheet up to that point, as Lille’s lack of creativity was the main responsible.
Offensively Reims could barely pose any danger, they had only 1 shot on target the entire game and scored 2 goals…
There are only 3 players making the offensive phase for Reims, the wingers and and the lone striker. Very rarely one of the central midfielders adventures upfront.
Long balls play a huge role in Reims’ tactic, this is the main way they try to destabilize opponents.
Lyon deserved to qualify for the semifinals of the French Cup after the game against Marseille (won 2-1). They found a way to score against any team in Ligue1, directly from free-kicks or rebounds.
Grenier’s free-kicks have an amazing precision, and if by any chance the keeper saves them, there’s always someone there to push the ball in the net on the rebound.
Attacking midfielder Gourcuff found a good rythm lately and even scored in the last 2 games. At first I thought the partnership Gourcuff – Grenier won’t work but it looks like I was wrong. Winger Lacazette also showed increased playing appetite against Marseille.
Everything looks great for Lyon at the moment and all signs are there for them to keep impressing.
With only 3 players participating in the offensive phase the chances for Reims to open up Lyon’s solid defense are very slim. Even if hosts will concentrate many players in defense, Lyon are masters at getting free-kick and converting them.
At 2.20 the price for Lyon to win is at a fair level.