Sparta Prague took a two-goal lead after Haraslín’s goals in the first half, but this was not enough to secure the win. The Sparta players lost 3:4 to the French team, Lyon in the duel for the first place in Group A in the 3rd round of the Europa League. It was 30 years ago the last time that Sparta Prague managed to defeat their French opponents at home and their overall record against them dropped to just two wins from 14 matches. Sparta remained second in the table and will face Lyon again in the next round, this time in France.
Prague’s team started the game in excellent spirits. They were already ahead in the 4th minute. Hložek’s cross from the corner flag was missed by Mančev’s acrobatic scissors, but the ball bounced to Haraslín, who guided it for a shot that ended into the goalkeeper’s opposite corner.
The quick strike gave Sparta the momentum, and their quick movement on the pitch put their opponents in trouble. The second goal came a quarter of an hour after the first, with Haraslín again being the man for the job. He ran in behind the experienced world champion, Boateng, deceived him and then won Lopes with a shot between his legs.
But it was proved that Lyon was too hard to die. The visitors quickly picked themselves up and began to show their skills. Three minutes before the break, Boateng played a great cross to Toko Ekambi and Lyon reduced the deficit. This goal played a key role in turning the score around in the second half. Eight minutes after the break, Aouar completed the return.
After Aouar’s goal, Sparta Prague was saved once from the bar, but in the 67th minute, substitute Paquetá scored. Sparta regained hopes when Malo Gusto was sent off after a second yellow card and Lyon continued the game with ten players. But it didn’t help them because Toko Ekambi secured the win for the French side in the end. Sparta Prague scored a third goal in the last moments of the game, but it was not enough to change anything. Krejci’s header after Hancko’s cross brought the game to an end with a final score 4-3 in favour of Lyon.
After three group stage fixtures completed, Lyon stayed on top of Group A, collecting a maximum of nine points, with Sparta Prague following in second place with four points. In third place is Scottish champions Rangers, with 3 points after their first win yesterday against the Danish side Brondby, who stayed at the bottom of the group with only 1 point.