Olympique Lyonnais's first visit to Hungary proved a fruitful one as the French club stormed to the top of UEFA Champions League Group E with a commanding victory against Debreceni VSC in Budapest.
Biggest away win
The Ligue 1 outfit were comfortably superior despite being reliant on set-pieces for most of their breakthroughs, with the Debrecen rearguard struggling to cope whenever Miralem Pjanić was at the controls. The talented No8 set Kim Källström up for an eye-catching finish from a corner before András Herczeg's men had properly settled and he scored himself with a free-kick shortly after, before finding the head of Sidney Govou to leave the Hungarian titleholders reeling with 24 minutes gone. Bafétimbi Gomis then pounced on over-enthusiastic goalkeeping soon after the interval to put the seal on Lyon's biggest away win in the competition.
Slow starters in recent weeks, the visitors made an uncharacteristically rapid impact to quell native passions at Debrecen's temporary home in the capital, Källström sweeping the ball low into net on the half-volley from Pjanić's flighted corner to the edge of the area three minutes in. If the defending left much to be desired, the technique was impeccable, and Lyon further justified their status as favourites ten minutes later, Pjanić leaving Vukašin Poleksić completely beaten with a curled free-kick from around 22 metres out that contained more than an echo of departed club favourite Juninho Pernambucano.
Pjanić was prompting constant danger from set-pieces and the schemer was again the catalyst as Lyon scored their third, picking out Sidney Govou with another corner which the French international headed in via a deflection off Péter Czvitkovics. The unfortunate Debrecen midfielder almost made up for his role in that strike with two attempts on goal in the immediate aftermath, only to find Hugo Lloris equal to the task as Lyon refused to give anything away.
At the other end, Govou then threatened to leave his second mark on the match with a far cleaner effort, but having eliminated László Bodnár and Ádám Komlósi with two sublime touches, the visiting captain unleashed a volley that Poleksić dived low to stop. The Montenegrin No1 began the second half in less impressive fashion than he ended the first, however, rushing out of his area to meet a long ball from Källström, misjudging the bounce and allowing Gomis to head himself clear and lob expertly into an empty net.
Brought on at the break, promising forward Gergely Rudolf forced Lloris to tip over with an attempt from distance, but the better chances continued to fall to Puel's charges, who continued to probe from dead-ball situations even after Pjanić's 57th-minute removal. Källström took over as chief tormentor and from one of his corners Jean II Makoun came within centimetres of scoring. A fifth goal proved elusive, but Les Gones will surely go into their double-header with Liverpool FC in confident mood, while Debrecen must lift themselves against ACF Fiorentina – starting on 20 October.