Manchester City and Lyon meet for the first time with the home side looking to mount another strong challenge this season.
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Manchester City's latest attempt to transfer their impressive domestic form into European success kicks off with a home game against Lyon, a team they have never previously met but who have once again become regular participants in the group stage.
• Champions of England for the third time in seven seasons in 2017/18, City have reached the knockout rounds for the last five seasons. In contrast, Lyon have not reached the round of 16 since 2011/12, but boast plenty of European know-how ahead of the sides' first meeting.
• Josep Guardiola's side finished 19 points clear in the English Premier League last season, picking up a record 100 points – although there was frustration as their European campaign ended against familiar opponents, domestic rivals Liverpool running out 5-1 aggregate winners in the quarter-final.
• The 2-1 home second-leg defeat against Liverpool meant City lost both home games in last season's knockout stage – the 2-1 defeat against Basel in the round of 16 second leg (5-2 aggregate) ended a 13-match unbeaten home run in the UEFA Champions League (W10 D3), qualifying included, stretching back to a 2-1 Juventus reversal on matchday one in 2015/16.
• City won all three home games in last season's group stage, including a 2-0 defeat of Shakhtar Donetsk, who are again among the opposition this season. They had won seven of their previous eight home European matches, including four in a row before losing to Basel.
• However, City have won only one of their last five European matches, home and away – losing the other four.
• City's best performance was reaching the 2015/16 semi-finals; this is their eighth consecutive appearance in the group stage.
• The Citizens' home record against French clubs is W2 D1, although their most recent match, a 5-3 defeat of Monaco in the 2016/17 UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg, led to elimination on away goals after a 3-1 second-leg loss in France.
• Lyon are in the group stage for the third time in four seasons – their 2015/16 and 2016/17 campaigns both ended at that hurdle.
• In 2017/18, Lyon made it as far as the UEFA Europa League round of 16, but were denied the chance to appear in the final at their own ground as they lost to CSKA Moskva at that stage.
• Les Gones tasted victory in England in 2017/18, Nabil Fekir and Bertrand Traoré scoring in a 2-1 victory at Everton in the UEFA Europa League group stage. Lyon also won 3-0 at home, and have lost only one of their last six matches against English clubs, home and away (W3 D2).
• Bruno Génésio's side won three of their five away games in Europe in 2017/18, losing only one.
• Lyon were UEFA Champions League semi-finalists in 2010 and are in the group stage for the 15th time – more than any other French club.
Links and trivia
• Guardiola's Barcelona side beat Lyon in the round of 16 of their victorious 2008/09 UEFA Champions League campaign, winning 5-2 at the Camp Nou after a 1-1 draw at Lyon's old Stade de Gerland home.
• Jason Denayer joined City aged 18 in July 2013; he was on the club's books until leaving for Lyon this summer, but never made a first-team appearance, having loan spells at Celtic, Galatasaray twice and Sunderland.
• Moussa Dembélé scored twice in Celtic's 3-3 UEFA Champions League group stage draw with City in September 2016.
• Have played together:
Benjamin Mendy & Jérémy Morel (Marseille, 2013–15)
• Have played in France:
Benjamin Mendy (Le Havre 2010–13, Marseille 2013–16, Monaco 2016/17)
Bernardo Silva (Monaco, 2014–17)
Riyad Mahrez (Le Havre, 2011–13)
• Have played in England:
Memphis Depay (Manchester United, 2015–17)
Rafael (Manchester United, 2008–15)
Bertrand Traoré (Chelsea, 2015/16)
• International team-mates:
Eliaquim Mangala, Benjamin Mendy & Nabil Fekir (France)
Bernardo Silva & Anthony Lopes (Portugal)
Ederson, Danilo, Fernandinho & Rafael (Brazil)
Kevin De Bruyne, Vincent Kompany & Jason Denayer (Belgium)
• Benjamin Mendy and Nabil Fekir were both part of the victorious France squad at this summer's FIFA World Cup. Fekir was a late substitute in the 4-3 win against Argentina in the round of 16, Sergio Agüero scoring in the 90th minute for the South American side.
• Summer transfers
In: Riyad Mahrez (Leicester), Claudio Gomes (Paris)*, Philippe Sandler (PEC Zwolle)*, Daniel Arzani (Melbourne City)*
Out: Yaya Touré (released), Pablo Maffeo (Stuttgart), Angeliño (PSV), Olarenwaju Kayode (Shakhtar Donetsk, loan made permanent), Pablo Marí (Deportivo La Coruña, loan), Anthony Cáceres (Melbourne City, loan), Kean Bryan (Sheffield United), Tosin Adarabioyo (West Bromwich Albion, loan), Joe Hart (Burnley), Patrick Roberts (Girona, loan), Jason Denayer (Lyon)
*Not in UEFA Champions League squad
• City won the FA Community Shield for the fifth time overall – and the first since 2012 – with a 2-0 defeat of Chelsea at Wembley on 5 August, Sergio Agüero scoring both goals.
• Including that fixture, City are unbeaten in their last 12 matches in all competitions (W10 D2), since a 2-1 loss at home to Liverpool in last season's UEFA Champions League quarter-final second leg. They were 3-0 winners at home to Fulham on Saturday and have won their last four matches at the City of Manchester Stadium.
• Benjamin Mendy was part of the victorious France squad at this summer's FIFA World Cup.
• Among the other City players on World Cup duty this summer, Vincent Kompany and Kevin De Bruyne helped Belgium finish third while Kyle Walker, John Stones, Raheem Sterling and Fabian Delph were in the England squad that also reached the semi-finals, Stones starting all seven matches.
• Olexandr Zinchenko scored an added-time winner as Ukraine won 2-1 away to the Czech Republic on 6 September, the first day of the new UEFA Nations League.
• De Bruyne suffered a knee injury in training on 15 August and has been ruled out for up to three months, while Claudio Bravo faces a lengthy spell on the sidelines after sustaining an Achilles problem on 20 August.
• Sterling (back) missed England's recent games through injury but returned to score against Fulham.
• Summer transfers
In: Léo Dubois (Nantes), Reo Griffiths (Tottenham Hotspur)*, Jason Denayer (Manchester City), Moussa Dembélé (Celtic), Lenny Pintor (Brest)
Out: Willem Geubbels (Monaco), Romain Del Castillo (Rennes), Mouctar Diakhaby (Valencia), Jean-Philippe Mateta (Mainz), Aldo Kalulu (Basel), Sergi Darder (Espanyol), Elisha Owusu (Sochaux), Myziane Maolida (Nice), Mariano Díaz (Real Madrid) , Christopher Martins Pereira (Troyes, loan), Gédéon Kalulu (Bourg-en Bresse, loan)
• Lyon's Ligue 1 record this season is W2 D1 L2 – both victories by a 2-0 scoreline, and both defeats 1-0.
• Saturday's 2-2 draw at Caen was Les Gones' first in all competitions since 4 March; their record in between was W12 L4.
• Ferland Mendy's late goal at Caen was his first for Lyon; he had not scored since finding the net for former club Le Havre on 3 October 2016.
• Nabil Fekir played in six of France's seven games during their victorious FIFA World Cup campaign this summer, all as substitute including in the final defeat of Croatia.
• Houssem Aouar signed a new five-year contract this summer.