Lyon canter to victory
By Alex Dunn. Last Updated: 19/10/04 9:30pm
French champions Lyon were simply too good for Fenerbahce as they powered to a 3-1 victory in Istanbul.
Lyon never looked like losing after Juninho Pernambucano handed them a second half lead and they now lead Group D ahead of Manchester United.
The first half was a largely sterile affair as Lyon sat deep, defended well and looked to hit Fenerbahce on the counter attack.
In Michael Essien and Mahamadou Diarra the French champions had a powerful and dominant midfield pairing that quickly subdued the fierce Istanbul crowd.
It was Lyon who contrived to miss the game's first genuine opportunity as Essien powered through the middle of Fenerbahce's ranks and fed Sidney Govou, who could only drag his effort wide from the angle.
Essien then needed a strong block from a stalwart Turkish backline to deny his run from deep and Sylvain Wiltord was left to rue excellent defending from Servet Cetin to deny his far post header.
Govou then squandered the game's clearest chance when hurriedly attempting a lob when free and Lyon entered the break in the ascendency.
In the second period Lyon added a final pass to their impress attacking forays and always looked likely to break down a stubborn Turkish rearguard.
Former Arsenal favourite Sylvain Wiltord squandered a glorious opening when fed by the increasingly influential Juninho Pernambucano and then the Brazilian tested Rustu with a snap shot of his own.
At the opposite end, Marcio Nobre tested Gregory Coupet in the Lyon goal with a shot from the angle and then Essien was again thwarted by a smart stop from Rustu.
Lyon looked ever likely to break the deadlock and the game's opener duly arrived courtesy of a sumptuous strike from Juninho.
Wiltord layed off on the edge of the Fenerbahce box and the gifted playmaker left Rustu crestfallen with a majestic shot into the top corner.
Diarra then contrived to miss a header from a yard but on 65 minutes, Cris struck Lyon's second after he powered home a header after hesitancy in the Fenerbahce box failed to deal with a Lyon corner.
The response from the home side was immediate but ultimately fruitless. Tuncay Sanli fired a delicious ball in to the Lyon box and the alert Nobre was on hand to reduce the deficit from close range.
Coupet needed to at his sharpest to deny a leveller after Marco Aurelli tried the cutest of lobs but it was the French side that deservedly sealed a win on their travels in the closing moments.
Wiltord broke beyond the Turkish backline and after an alert look up, he fed substitute Pierre-Alain Frau to tap home from five yards to hand Lyon an impressive 3-1 victory in Istanbul.
Click here for Fenerbahce v Lyon player ratings
Click here for Champions League Group D table
|0||1st Half Goals||0|
|4||Shots on Target||12|
|2||Shots off Target||7|
UEFA Champions League
Tue 19th Oct - Group C
Juventus1 - 0Bay Munich
Ajax3 - 0Mac Tel Avi
Tue 19th Oct - Group B
Leverkusen3 - 1Roma
R Madrid1 - 0Dynamo Kiev
Tue 19th Oct - Group D
Fenerbahce1 - 3Lyon
Sp Prague0 - 0Man Utd
Tue 19th Oct - Group A
Monaco2 - 1Olympiakos
Liverpool0 - 0Deportivo
UEFA Champions League Group A
UEFA Champions League Group B
UEFA Champions League Group C
|1||Paris St Germain||6||13|
UEFA Champions League Group D
|3||FC Viktoria Plzen||6||3|
UEFA Champions League Group E
|4||FC Steaua Bucuresti||6||3|
UEFA Champions League Group F
UEFA Champions League Group G
|2||Zenit St. Petersburg||6||6|
UEFA Champions League Group H