Buidling Dreams Together


Is Olympique Lyonnais The Next Falling Giant Of European Football?

Olympique Lyonnais sits bottom of the Ligue 1 table after four games with a single point.

After their 4-1 loss against Paris Saint Germain, fascinating scenes unfolded when the largest Lyon ultra group, the Bad Gone Ultras, scolded the players after their poor start to the season. 

However, Les Gones’ problems go further than the football pitch.

Turbulent Ownership

Former owner Jean-Michel Aulas and current owner John Textor are currently clashing heads. 

Aulas is a French businessman who served as the president of Lyon from 1987-2022 before selling his portion of the club to Textor who is an American businessman who has shares within multiple clubs across the world, including the likes of Crystal Palace and Botafogo.

The former Lyon owner has launched legal action to seize the accounts of Lyon. This comes after accusing Textor of defamation and filing a lawsuit against the current Lyon owner and his company Eagle Football. 

The changing of Olympique Lyonnais owners
On The Pitch Struggles

Yet this spat off the field has seemingly translated into the coaching team’s efforts with Laurent Blanc’s position looking tenuous. 

This comes despite joining the club less than a year ago in October 2022. Blanc changed the tide for the Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes club who had a poor start to the 2022/23 season eventually guiding them to seventh position, close to obtaining European football.

Lacklustre In The Transfer Market

Whilst some people blame Blanc’s tactics for the downturn in form, while this may play a factor, one can also look towards Lyon’s transfer dealings throughout the summer.

Academy prospect Bradley Barcola was let go to league rivals PSG whilst other notable players such as Casteleto Lukeba and Romain Faivre were also sold ahead of the 2023/24 season. Along with this, club icons such as Moussa Dembele and Houssem Aouar left on free transfers.

On the other hand, their incoming transfers haven’t been all that inspiring. Most of Les Gones’ transfer dealings have consisted of loan deals and small transfer fees despite the money brought in from high figure sales.

Will Change Of The Sidelines Make A Difference?

Blanc looks set to lose the top job at Lyon after an underwhelming start to the season. 

Rumours are swirling of a new managerial change in the offing with the current international break appearing to be a great opportunity for that transition.

However, this task is still not simple.

Graham Potter has reportedly held talks with the French club but declined the offer. Whilst another former Premier League manager in Julien Lopetegui is also considered a potential candidate along with former Eintracht Frankfurt manager Oliver Glasner.

Lauren Blanc at Olympique Lyonnais
What’s Next For Olympique Lyonnais?

Olympique Lyonnais’ struggles stretch far greater than on the pitch. 

The prestigious French club, who have won seven Ligue 1 titles, find themselves in a situation where the next step is not obvious. 

The clashing of owners serves no morale boost for the playing staff whilst poor form on the pitch creates no smoke for issues outside of football.

Lyon find themselves stuck in a situation that could grow more daunting and dismal as the season goes on.

Whether Blanc has time to rectify his situation or a new coach takes up the task with the difficult job at hand, only time will tell.

Long gone are the days of Champions League semi-finals against top European sides. Les Gones need to find a path to safety as they look to rebuild and reclaim their title as one of France’s biggest teams.

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