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Aug 23, 2014

Lyon v Lens: Preview

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Lyon boss Hubert Fournier has urged his side to put their Europa League setback to one side as they return to domestic action on Sunday.

Les Gones suffered a shock 2-1 home defeat to Romanian opponents FC Astra Giurgiu in the play-off first-leg and are now in real danger of missing out on the competition's group stages.

While Fournier himself has one eye on the return clash next Thursday, he does not want his side to underestimate the threat of recently-promoted Lens, who have been beaten in their opening two Ligue 1 matches this season.

``The match against Lens is the most important. It will help us for the return match against Astra,'' Fournier told a press conference.

``The best way to prepare for the return game is to approach Sunday's game in the best possible way, by controlling our limited time on the ball, for example. You have to have heart to be more airtight defensively.

``The pressure has always been great at Lyon.''

Lyon, who are on three points after following an opening day win over Rennes with a 2-1 defeat at Toulouse last week, will be without Clement Grenier after the 23-year-old sustained an injury against Astra.

The attacking midfielder suffered a recurrence of a groin problem that kept him out of France's World Cup squad over the summer and will undergo an operation on the complaint that will rule him out him for up to eight weeks.

Jordan Ferri is suspended while fellow midfielder Yoann Gourcuff and defender Mouhamadou Dabo are likely to remain on the sidelines.

Lens manager Antoine Kombouare is desperate for his side to build on decent performances in losing efforts against Nantes and Guingamp.

``I knew we could compete but I'm disappointed not to have taken any points,'' he said.

``Especially when you have the feeling of doing a good job and have been able to cause problems to the opponent.

Two 1-0 defeats have left them still looking for their first goal since sealing promotion to the top flight and Kombouare insists his side need to believe in themselves more.

``It is necessary that we have a little more confidence. We need more determination,'' he added.

ends

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