Sevilla entered the weekend in second in La Liga, above Barcelona, but lost 3-1 away to Athletic Bilbao, one of the tougher away trips in Spain. Man City loanee Samir Nasri scored his first for the club, however. Last time out in the Champions League, Sevilla held Juventus to a goalless draw - a fixture they likely weren't anticipating any points from. They now face a weakened Lyon side, who is stuck in the middle of Ligue 1. Alexandre Lacazette continues to be out with an injury with Nabil Fekir stepping up to pick up the goalscoring burden. They're atop Group H after being the sole winners in the first gameweek, but will find an away trip to Sevilla without Lacazette a tough test.
For Sevilla, the Champions League has been merely a warm-up for the Europa League trophy they’ve come to own for three years straight (as well as in both 2006 and 2007). Their five Europa League trophies in 11 years have given them more silverware in Europe than Manchester City, Chelsea or Arsenal. Things aren’t as optimistic as you’d expect, however, after director of football Monchi, the most influential figure in the club’s recent success, was denied a request to quit after suffering from considerable burnout. In addition, they lost their highest scoring player last year, Kevin Gameiro (among four other high profile losses) but Monchi has brought in plenty of reinforcements, including Ben Yedder, who scored 17 in 35 for Toulouse last season. They’ll also begin the season with former Chile manager Jorge Sampaoli taking the helm. With Juve the only big contender in their group, a trip to the Round of 16 is within reach.
Lyon will be expected to improve on their dismal display in the Champions League last year, when they finished in dead last in the group in a disastrous start to the season. With star striker Alexandre Lacazette not moving over the summer and the return of young attacking midfielder Nabil Fakir from injury, they have the firepower to do so. Elsewhere the squad remains relatively intact, apart from defender Samuel Umtiti’s move to Barcelona after starting for France at the Euros. They’re the clear favorite to upset PSG’s league dominance and early domestic momentum could translate into a smooth run in the group stage.
Scored at least 14 goals for four straight seasons at Toulouse in Ligue 1.
N'Zonzi was Stoke City's player of the year in 2014-15 prior to joining Sevilla.