Liverpool target Lacazette leaves it late to score 12th of the season

Alexandre Lacazette

Lyon closed the gap on Paris Saint-Germain this week, but it took a very late strike from the league's top scorer to see off Stade de Reims 2-1.

After scoring 15 goals last season, Lyon striker Alexandre Lacazette attracted attention from top clubs all over Europe, with Arsenal and Liverpool very interested in the 23-year-old Frenchman.

Last night the striker came to Lyon’s rescue again, scoring his 12th of the season as they beat Stade de Reims 2-1 to move within four points of Paris Saint-Germain in second.

There was an element of luck to the strike and Lacazette was quite fortunate to be awarded the goal. With only seconds remaining, the France striker had the ball wide on the right and hit a cross-come-shot, Reims goalkeeper Johnny Placide could only knock the ball into his own net.

Lacazette later admitted that the goal was a cross, but as it was on target, the LFP has awarded the Lyon man his 12th of the season, taking him back above Andre-Pierre Gignac as the league’s top scorer.

If Lacazette stays fit and in-form, he could go on to score over 20 goals this season. Any campaign to that level would make it very difficult for Lyon to hold on to their hot property.

Ideally, Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas would love to keep Lacazette at the club until the end of next season. Especially if OL can stay in the top three and qualify for the Champions League.

Having the chance to play against Europe’s elite with his hometown club in their brand new stadium, may be too good an opportunity for Lacazette to resist, even if Liverpool and Arsenal come calling.

It would be a blow to Lyon if they couldn’t host European football at their new home, but it would be a disaster if the 58,000 Lyon fans were not able to welcome Lacazette to the state-of-the-art stadium.

This season he looks more mature than ever, using the ball well and making some excellent runs. Finding the net with his left and right feet and headers, his game looks so well rounded. 

What Lacazette also does well is receiving the ball into feet, using his strength to hold the ball up, then turning with pace and skill to attack the opposition back line. Both Liverpool and Arsenal could do with someone of his quality in their sides, but nothing but a hefty transfer fee will help the suitors wrestle him away from Les Gones.

Eden Hazard scored 20 goals in Ligue 1 before making his €32 million move to Chelsea. If Lacazette can match that, it might take a similar bid for any club to have a chance of prizing Lyon’s talisman away this summer.

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