Lyon to axe talented misfit

2015-05-18 10:56
Yoann Gourcuff (File)

Lyon - The rollercoaster career of former France international Yoann Gourcuff suffered a new blow Sunday when Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas revealed he was surplus to requirements.

"He's a great player but he just couldn't fit in," Aulas said of the 28-year-old he signed in 2010 for $25 million on a five year deal worth 450,000 euros per month for the former AC Milan and Bordeaux attacking midfielder.

The Lyon president was talking the morning after Paris Saint Germain's 2-1 win away at Montpellier erased their slim hopes of winning the Ligue 1 title with a game to spare.

"What would have been wonderful is if he could have proved with Lyon what a great player he is," Aulas told French television on Sunday.

"This is not great news for him," Aulas admitted. "But it stops here."

Operating on a more modest economic system than in their heyday when they won seven straight titles between 2002-2008, the club have been offloading those remaining players on big salaries.

The 31-times capped Gourcuff, France's player of the year in 2009, was infamously frozen out by star players Franck Ribery and Nicolas Anelka at France's disastrous 2010 South Africa World Cup campaign, which ended in a player strike and first round elimination.

Lyon have had a successful run with a young team built with up to nine first team starters coming from not only the youth team, but also the Lyon area.

Their 2014-2015 campaign, which has seen them return to the Champions League, has been marked by the emergence of Alexandre Lacazette, who has scored 27 times in the league with a game to go.


Read more on:    lyon  |  ligue 1  |  soccer

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