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Boateng, Diomandé, Caqueret, Aouar… the winners of Blanc’s arrival



In the heart of a trainer’s first week, everyone is eager to please the new power. When the composition of the team arrives, about half know that it has failed. The OL match at Rennes (2-3) announced Laurent Blanc’s first intentions: a 3-5-2 whose midfield sometimes deforms (Caqueret lower, Tolisso and Aouar higher), players coming out of cupboard, others recalled to the bench, and eight players trained at the club in the starting team, without it being known whether it was a will or a chance. But the analysis of the winners and losers of this first team composition of White, will have to be mixed, of course, with the lessons of this defeat, to imagine the table in the short term.

Boateng and Aouar revived, Tetê abandoned

A priori, the winners were Jérôme Boateng, Sinaly Diomandé, Maxence Caqueret and Houssem Aouar, who had replaced, next to the last “eleven” formed by Peter Bosz, against Toulouse (1-1), Thiago Mendes, Johan Lepenant, Tetê and Karl Toko Ekambi. In hindsight, not everyone was a winner, at least not yet: out of the closet where Bosz had kept him since the end of last season, Boateng still had some traces of mothballs, too little used to be prepared for what awaited him on Sunday. It was already the debate last season: should you field a central defender who cannot play more than an hour? When he left, Blanc replaced him with Damien Da Silva, immediately guilty on the goal of the Rennes victory, rather than with Thiago Mendes, whom he considers a midfielder, but who did not enter either line where Jeff Reine-Adélaïde and Romain Faivre had the preference.

Holders immutable in the 4-3-3 of Bosz, Toko Ekambi and Tetê only had a few minutes: in a two-man attack, as much as the Cameroonian can play, as much as the Brazilian can suffer from the disappearance of his position as winger right. Lepenant’s relegation to the stands is undoubtedly even more cruel, because the young Lyonnais, who will turn 20 on Saturday, was one of the satisfactions of the start of the season. But, while Tolisso’s injury may be a game-changer, it’s no surprise that Aouar is the kind of player the new Lyon coach will like, so much does he match his vision. Nevertheless: the clearest separation, between losers and winners of the new era, will occur when OL win again and a team breaks away



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