Houllier turns to rotation
By Kent Hedlundh and Patrick Haond
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Gerard Houllier will rotate John Carew and Karim Benzema to replace Fred.
Gerard Houllier says he will call on John Carew and Karim Benzema to share the burden created by Fred's enforced absence at Lyon.
The Brazilian international has been ruled out of action for six to eight weeks after pulling a thigh muscle, meaning he will now be unavailable for the reigning French champions up until their winter break.
As well as missing Lyon's three remaining games in the UEFA Champions League group stage Fred will be absent for 10 Ligue 1 clashes, and Houllier must now turn to his 'plan b' in order to compensate for the blow.
The former Liverpool boss has stated he is unwilling to utilise Sylvain Wiltord in a central role, so French teenager Benzema and Norwegian international Carew will now rotate striking duties.
"We will have 13 matches to play without Fred, because of course he will not play again before the winter break," said Houllier in L'Equipe.
"Except if I am forced with an epidemic I will not play Sylvain as a centre forward, I need him so much on the flank.
"During those 13 matches without Fred until the break, John and Karim will take it in turns.
"The freshness, the adversary, the partnership with the other attacking players will be considered to make the choice."
Lyon look well on course for a sixth title win in succession following a superb 4-1 away victory at Marseille at the weekend.
Swedish international Kim Kallstrom scored the fourth goal at Stade Velodrome and the midfielder was happy to take full advantage of Tiago's absence due to injury.
"I know my role, Tiago has played well and scored many goals," Kallstrom told Sportbladet.
"But it is these matches that matter. When I get the chance I have to take it.
"They [Marseille] hadn't lost since last year and the atmosphere is crazy there, but we said that we should go out and try to win."