Another nice shot from Lyon. Like almost every year, OL blew up the counters to equal the best sale in their history. Lucas Paqueta will join the Premier League since West Ham will pay nearly 60 million euros to secure his services, according to L’Equipe. In the case, Lyon realizes an incredible capital gain for a player who arrived in September 2020 for only 20 million euros and proves, once again, his nice know-how in terms of sales.
To promote its best players, the club of Jean-Michel Aulas has become a European benchmark. Since 2017, and while he has not always played in the Champions League and has experienced big air holes, he has sold for 531 million euros. This is exceptional. But selling well does not bring any title, does not garnish the charts. 2017 marks the beginning of huge sales but also marks the beginning of a sporting decline. In the meantime, OL have only played in the Champions League twice and have had their two worst seasons in the 21st century.
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Can we “win championships” by selling our best players?
Yes, the Gones sell very well but do not capitalize on it. This summer was to mark the beginning of a new era. After a failed season (8th in L1), the leaders had shown their muscles at the start of the school year. Make way for an ambitious new project led by a new shareholder (John Textor), a capital increase of 86 million euros and exciting horizons like “win championships and the Champions League“, according to the club’s new strongman.
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What could be likened to setbacks was followed by facts with the return of Alexandre Lacazette and Corentin Tolisso or the arrival of Nicolas Tagliafico. But these ambitions and these ardent declarations suddenly collided with the principle of reality and Lyon let Paqueta slip away. Will Lyon be better off without its Brazilian international? The answer seems obvious as he has wowed Ligue 1 since his arrival, especially during a fantastic first six months.
Lucas Paquetà and Bruno Guimaraes in the OL jersey
Credit: Getty Images
Guimaraes – Paqueta: History repeats itself
Difficult not to regret the departure of the one who will start the next World Cup as a holder in the middle of the Seleçao. Paqueta lacked consistency, his coach did not always know how to get the best out of it but he never turned away from the collective project and Peter Bosz continued to have absolute confidence in him. Even if his sale was scheduled, even if it was also a question of liquidating Juninho’s legacy, Lyon had the opportunity to assert their ambitions by retaining the best element of their team, but history repeats itself.
Already last winter, faced with a dilemma between losing their most regular midfielder or pocketing 42 million, the Lyonnais had chosen the check and the absence of Bruno Guimaraes undoubtedly cost dearly in the fight for Europe. His replacement for six months, Tanguy Ndombélé, never made the weight. This time, it’s Romain Faivre, so discreet since his arrival from Brest, who will take over from Paqueta. The task seems daunting. Therefore, can OL be in the nails of the ambitious speeches of its leaders by letting go, even at a price of gold, its best player?
Lucas Paqueta (Olympique Lyonnais)
Credit: Getty Images
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