Thiney: Juvisy can overturn Lyon lead

FCF Juvisy Essonne welcome holders Olympique Lyonnais on Sunday trailing 3-0 in their semi-final, but Gaëtane Thiney insists that with an early goal they could turn the all-French tie.

Lyon's Megan Rapinoe (left) challenges Juvisy's Camille Catala during the first leg
Lyon's Megan Rapinoe (left) challenges Juvisy's Camille Catala during the first leg ©AFP

Gaëtane Thiney insists an early goal will be the key to giving FCF Juvisy Essonne the belief they need to fight back against Olympique Lyonnais in the second leg of their UEFA Women's Champions League semi-final.

The historic first last-four game between two teams from France was settled in favour of the holders last weekend, two goals from Lotta Schelin assisting a Wendie Renard header in opening a 3-0 lead at Stade de Gerland in front of almost 22,000 spectators. That has given Lyon pole position for a 23 May trip to Stamford Bridge against Arsenal LFC or VfL Wolfsburg, keeping up their record of reaching all four finals since the competition took its current form in 2009/10.

Yet although Juvisy can no longer prevent Lyon securing a seventh straight French title, they can end their bid for a unique third consecutive European crown. "We will be working hard at home," Juvisy midfielder Thiney told UEFA.com. "[During the first leg] we frustrated them and they were more worried than they expected. But it's the Champions League, things go very quickly and maybe we lacked a bit of experience.

"It was a shame we didn't score a goal, but that's the way it is. We will do it in the return leg and if we score quickly, then we will believe in [the victory]. We will give it everything we have got anyway, that's for sure."

Lyon, who recover defender Laura Georges from a ban, have strong motivation to accompany their sizeable advantage in the tie, as they head to the suburbs of Paris just 48 hours after handing over the trophy to the City of London, where they first lifted it at Craven Cottage in 2011.

Thiney's fellow French international forward Élodie Thomis missed the retaining of the trophy in Munich in 2012 through suspension and, like Lyon team-mate Amandine Henry and captain Sonia Bompastor, remains coy on the chances of progress – wishing to view the lead as a good start rather than a decisive one.

"We, at Lyon, live only for [reaching the final] and on top of that it will be at Chelsea," Thomis said. "The club have never been there, so it would be great to play in that match. But we still have the second leg ahead of us at Juvisy and we know it won't be easy. We are not qualified yet, even if we have established a good advantage."

Will miss final if booked
Juvisy: Anaïg Butel, Camille Catala, Amélie Coquet, Nelly Guilbert, Julie Machart, Aissatou Tounkara, Emilie Trimoreau
Lyon: Sonia Bompastor, Ami Otaki, Élodie Thomis

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