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Struggling French club Lyon fires coach Grosso after less than three months in charge

Fabio Grosso Lyon Fabio Grosso - The Canadian Press

LYON, France (AP) — Italian coach Fabio Grosso was fired by Lyon on Thursday after less than three months in charge of the struggling seven-time French champion.

Grosso was fired after just eight league games in charge, having being hired in September as a replacement for Laurent Blanc with the mission to put the team back on track.

Blanc left following a bad start to the season, with Lyon in last place with only one point from four games. The club remains bottom of the league after Grosso's departure, with seven points from 12 matches and just one win.

The 46-year-old Grosso, who played 75 games for Lyon from 2007-09, had a contract until the end of the season. He was injured in October when the Lyon team bus was attacked by fans throwing stones after a game at Marseille, which left him bleeding from a cut to his face.

The club, which is owned by American businessman John Textor, said Pierre Sage would be in charge of preparations for Lyon's match at Lens on Saturday.

The prospect of relegation is real for Lyon, a storied club known for its record run of seven straight league titles from 2002 to 2008. The last time Lyon played in the second division was during the 1988-89 season.

The signs of Lyon’s decline have been obvious in the past couple of years. Lyon finished in the top five spots from 1999 to 2019. The seventh-place finish in 2020 was considered a blip because Lyon reached the semifinals of the Champions League that year.

But Lyon finished eighth in 2022 and seventh last season, missing out on European competition.


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