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Puel salutes Lyon stamina after Benfica win

Claude Puel was a picture of contentment after Olympique Lyonnais defeated ten-man SL Benfica in a battle of attrition at Stade de Gerland though he admits a repeat in Portugal will be harder.

Puel salutes Lyon stamina after Benfica win
Puel salutes Lyon stamina after Benfica win ©UEFA.com

Claude Puel was a picture of contentment after goals from Jimmy Briand and Lisandro earned Olympique Lyonnais a 2-0 victory at home to SL Benfica despite some tired legs. The dismissal of Nicolás Gaitán just before half-time helped, and Puel and opposite number Jorge Jesus stressed that the return fixture in Portugal in a fortnight will be very different.

Claude Puel, Lyon coach
Three wins in as many games is a healthy return: we are getting stronger and stronger. It's important that we continue improving. We have a good squad and after experiencing a few difficult moments at the start of the season we are growing in confidence.

It's good to have the win as I'm wary of the match at Benfica. The prospect of getting something from a stadium like that in front of fans like Benfica's … it's good to have won tonight. There was some tiredness following the game against Lille [on Sunday night] and in the end we should really have scored more. Hats off to players, though.

Jorge Jesus, Benfica coach
Lyon played with an extra player for almost an hour and until Gaitán was sent off the game was evenly balanced. Lyon scored the first goal after we lost possession and then set about wearing us down, tiring us out. They are an experienced team and knew how to retain the ball. We only managed to get into our stride in the dying minutes.

Some of our players that don't usually misplace passes misplaced them today because of Lyon's pressing game. Losing by only two goals could prove important. We have certainly not lost hope of advancing because our defeats have come away from home.