Olympique Lyonnais match-winner Michel Bastos is hoping that his side's 3-1 success away against Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC can serve as a springboard for a team still struggling to find form this season.
The Brazilian international set Lyon on the road to victory in Israel with an early penalty before doubling their lead courtesy of an emphatic volley as the interval approached. Hapoel goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama set up a nervy finale with a spot kick of his own with 11 minutes remaining, but Miralem Pjanić made sure of the win in added time to put Claude Puel's men three points clear at the top of UEFA Champions League Group B.
"We know that this is a difficult time for us and today we did our best and got a fantastic victory," said Bastos, whose side lie 18th in the Ligue 1 table. "
This will restore confidence and help us to continue in the same manner. We needed this. It was a tough match, particularly because of the heat. Sometimes you play well and lose, like we did against St-Etienne [on Saturday]. In this game, we didn't play as well but we won.
"It was important to get the victory," he added. "I'm very happy. I'm lucky enough to have scored two goals in the Champions League and the second one was especially beautiful. I never hesitate to go for chances like that but this time I was lucky. Today we faced a strong team with a noisy crowd and now I hope we can show the same ability in the French league."
Full-back Anthony Réveillère put the outcome down to the visitors' physical power, meanwhile. "It was a very hard match against Hapoel's quick and technically good players," he explained. "Lyon are more physical and stronger than Hapoel and that made the difference between the teams. Hapoel are a good side with a tough stadium to come to and every team will have difficulty here."
The result leaves Hapoel bottom of the section ahead of their Matchday 3 trip to face FC Schalke 04 on 20 October – when Lyon host SL Benfica – and the Israeli club's forward Ben Sahar urged his team to learn from the loss. "Lyon are a big club with great players," he said. "Unlike us, they knew how to score from their chances.
We've improved from our first game and we'll learn from our mistakes and hopefully get some points from the third match."
©UEFA.com 1998-2013. All rights reserved.