Lyon complete Italian job
Jean Makoun and Karim Benzema put Lyon through to the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League at Fiorentina's expense.
By Steve Pass
Last Updated: 25/11/08 11:08pm
First-half goals from Jean Makoun and Karim Benzema put Lyon through to last 16 of the UEFA Champions League at Fiorentina's expense.
The Italians got a goal back via Alberto Gilardino on the stroke of half-time but could not get a second-half equaliser.
They must now secure a draw in their last Group F game at Steaua Bucharest on 10th December to go into the Uefa Cup.
The home side's Adrian Mutu had the first shot on target in the third minute but his long-range effort was easily saved by keeper Hugo Lloris.
Zdravko Kuzmanovic then had a low long-range shot for Fiorentina which Lloris had to push out around the post.
But Lyon scored against the run of play in the 15th minute when Benzema pulled a cross from Abdul Kader Keita back from the left byline straight into Makoun's path and he slotted home.
Fiorentina almost hit back immediately but Lloris scrambled the ball away from the incoming Mutu after a flick on by Gilardino.
Benzema then shot just wide from the edge of Fiorentina's box when meeting a cross from Keita in the 18th minute.
Team-mate Juninho hit the bar when his long-range free-kick took a slight deflection off the wall, while soon afterwards Mutu rose unmarked in the box and headed just over from a corner.
Benzema then stunned the Italians by doubling Lyon's lead on 27 minutes with a fantastic goal.
He scored after Juninho dispossessed Riccardo Montolivo near the halfway line and fed the ball to the striker, who slotted home across keeper Sebastien Frey from long range.
Mutu then headed onto the right post from a corner while unmarked but Gilardino got the home side back into the match when outjumping John Mensah to head home on 45 minutes from a cross from Mario Alberto Santana.
In the second period, Juninho again hit the crossbar with a long-range free kick before Montolivo's low effort was well saved by Lloris with his legs.
Kuzmanovic almost equalised for Fiorentina in the 68th minute but his effort from the right of the box took a deflection onto the left post.
At the other end, Frey pulled off a fantastic save to deny Keita with his legs before Mutu's header was then saved.The Italian outfit pressed but were held at bay by Lyon, whose substitute Ederson hit the crossbar with a fantastic volley in the 85th minute.
|1||1st Half Goals||2|
|3||Shots on Target||3|
|13||Shots off Target||8|