This summer, OL announced the arrival of the American billionaire John Textor as the future owner of the club, the continuation of Peter Bosz in the complete failure of his first season and the return of local children, Alexandre Lacazette and Corentin Tolisso. A summer of bets and promises that, two months later, have not been confirmed and in the end there remains an ambient ambiguity on all floors of the club.
By Alexandre Le Bris
On June 21, a new era will begin in OL. Presented with great acclaim by Jean-Michel Aulas, John Textor was inducted as the future new owner of OL. The American billionaire, who owns Botafogo (Brazil), Molenbeek (Belgium) and 40% of the capital of the English club Crystal Palace, seems to be the hen with golden eggs that Jean-Michel Aulas is looking for. On paper, the trader has experience and above all funds available, the perfect combination in short. So he arrived at a press conference as a wanted man and took the opportunity to do his one-man show. The ideal son-in-law seduced Jean-Michel Aulas by leaving him in charge of the club: “There are no changes in management, that is not the goal. » He also captivated the supporters when he talked about his goals in the game, bringing all the Gones back to the memories of the 2000s. “We want to win titles, we want to return to the European scene and win, we want to beat PSG. »
After all, John Textor promises a lot of it, very quickly. Except that there are less than fifteen days before the deadline for the end of the sale process set for September 30, the candidate for taking over the club will still seek funding, it was announced The group. He checked his contact book to find sums amounting to several tens of millions of euros to convince “a dozen financial institutions that currently hold the debt of OL Groupe” , reports the French daily. It is rumored that John Textor should continue, and he will also attend his first match at the Parc OL, this Sunday night against Paris Saint-Germain.
Peter Bosz the evil Gone
Let’s hope for his sake that he sees a better performance than the one given by Les Gones since the beginning of the season. The team led by Peter Bosz remained with two defeats last week in Lorient (3-1) and Monaco (2-1). The pressure is getting worse on the coach, as football director Vincent Ponsot explained in the columns of growth : “We are not waiting for the Monaco game to set goals for Peter. We want to get back on the podium. We expect results faster than waiting for the end of the season. Peter has goals set in the World Cup break (15e day)” . An ultimatum that was not very pleasant for the coach and his team, fifth in the championship that played only in Monaco as a competitor for European places. All after the last season of hell ended in eighth place in the league and by a beating at home in the quarterfinals of C3 against West Ham (1-1, 0-3).
The mission promises to be dangerous for the technician who has to travel to Lens to return from the international break in early October and continue to Rennes, Lille and Marseille in particular. Reasons for hope seem small, because the many tactical deficiencies seen last year when it comes to destabilizing compact blocks that easily project the counter were revealed against Reims and Lorient. The former Ajax and Bayer Leverkusen player also failed to make his defense unreadable, as evidenced by the 51 goals he conceded last season, making him ninth worst in the league in this area. However, he had to be relieved of some responsibilities in this sector, because his superiors Cheyrou (recruitment director) and Ponsot were not really inspired by the question of recruitment, at the time Damien Da Silva and Jérôme Boateng (34 years each. ), who now fails at 69.
Cherki without a gaming license, but with the keys to the truck
A big question mark that didn’t find an answer during the summer transfer. Because when Bruno Cheyrou appeared when announcing the signing of the two ghosts Alexandre Lacazette and Corentin Tolisso, the choice not to recruit anyone to reposition Thiago Mendes in central defense throughout the season as doubtful. This seems to be confirmed at the end of a week with two defeats in which he was directly involved in most of the goals. The late sale of Lucas Paquetá also caused a real loss for the Lyon eleven that Lacazette alone could not compensate for, although his undeniable technical contribution and his four goals and one assist were an asset for the team. The 2018 world champion who returned from Bayern will not occupy this creative post left vacant as he slowly took his mark in the number six position after recovering from a physical glitch that made all physical preparations disappear.
Bosz’s players also cannot rely on their goalkeeper Anthony Lopes, who was sent off on the first day of a dangerous outing. His poor position was further pointed out by Enzo Le Fée (FC Lorient) who cheated him with a free kick: “At the base, I wanted to shoot to the side of the goalkeeper, and I knew that he was about to be stuck in his post. So I said to myself that without using any force, I just had to to lob the wall. That’s what I did and it worked.” So as always in these turbulent times, OL relies on its nursery. With his ability to destabilize defenses and burn them, Rayan Cherki added to be decisive, as he has three offerings in his 80 minutes of play since the start of the season. As a detonator, it was from him that the decision came against Reims then Auxerre, finally giving the impression that someone holds the keys to the attacking animation truck. But when it comes to writing a new season, the strategy of putting everything on the shoulders of a 19-year-old kid who plays no more than 20 minutes per game appears almost unconscious.
By Alexandre Le Bris