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Lyon return to French summit

Published: Monday 16 January 2012, 10.25CET
After two and a half months in the unusual position of second, Olympique Lyonnais are on top in France after a derby win at AS Saint-Étienne took them above FCF Juvisy Essonne.
Lyon return to French summit
Wendie Renard's volley got Lyon going ©AFP
Published: Monday 16 January 2012, 10.25CET

Lyon return to French summit

After two and a half months in the unusual position of second, Olympique Lyonnais are on top in France after a derby win at AS Saint-Étienne took them above FCF Juvisy Essonne.

Reigning European champions Olympique Lyonnais are back on top in France after overtaking FCF Juvisy Essonne at the summit.

Lyon, who did not drop a point in 2010/11 while also winning the UEFA Women's Champions League for the first time, fell to second on 30 October when they were held by Paris Saint-Germain FC to drop a point behind Juvisy, a gap maintained until Sunday. Lyon cruised to a 3-0 derby win at AS Saint-Étienne while Juvisy drew 0-0 at Montpellier Hérault SC and are now a point adrift with eight games remaining, four in front of PSG, who pipped the Essonne team to second and a European spot last season.

Wendie Renard volleyed Lyon in front at St-Étienne just before half-time and the player who helped set up that goal, Eugénie Le Sommer, made it 2-0 on 48 minutes. Substitute Lotta Schelin claimed the third with 20 minutes remaining.

Patrice Lair, yet to taste defeat over 90 minutes since taking over as Lyon coach in summer 2010, said: "That was great, the girls had a big game in difficult conditions. The determination of Wendie broke the deadlock. We are at the top of the league, we are in our rightful place. I knew Juvisy would be pegged back by Montpellier, who are a better team in my opinion. Now we must stay ahead by negotiating the last games well."

Lair's side, who face Brøndby IF in the UEFA Women's Champions League quarter-finals in March, are the only one of the eight European contenders not currently on winter break or in close season.

Last updated: 16/01/12 11.08CET

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