Depay scores in Montpellier defeat as Barca rumours flourish

Lyon (AFP) – Memphis Depay scored what might be his farewell goal for Lyon on Tuesday in a 2-1 Ligue 1 defeat at Montpellier which could be his final match before a rumoured move to Barcelona.

Netherlands attacker Depay smashed home a penalty with eight minutes left as 10-man Lyon failed to claw back a two-goal deficit created by a Teji Savanier brace scored either side of half-time.

Rudi Garcia’s side were already a goal down to Savanier’s 38th-minute penalty, which was won by the Frenchman, when Houssem Aouor was sent off for a high challenge on Arnaud Souqet just before the break in his first league start since shaking off the coronavirus.

Savanier doubled his hosts’ lead with a sharp low finish in the 59th minute, and they held out against late pressure following Depay’s spot-kick, which came after Hilton was sent off for a late tackle on Rayan Cherki.

Dutch daily De Telegraaf reported earlier on Tuesday that Netherlands forward Depay was set to join compatriots Frenkie de Jong and Ronald Koeman at Barca this week in a transfer worth 25 million euros ($29.6 million).

However Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas later said that his Barcelona counterpart Josep Maria Bartomeu told him the Catalan giants could not afford Depay.

“The president of Barcelona told me on Sunday that Barca are really suffering from the Covid crisis and were not able to make an offer,” Aulas said on Twitter.

On Wednesday Paris Saint-Germain try to get over their dreadful start to the season when they host Metz at the Parc des Princes.

Champions PSG lost both their opening two fixtures and had been hit with a wave of coronavirus cases that affected seven of their star players.

Thomas Tuchel’s side are also awaiting the result of Wednesday’s disciplinary commission, which is set to reveal its punishments following the mass brawl involving Neymar that marred the end of their 1-0 defeat to Marseille at the weekend.

Marseille meanwhile will host Saint-Etienne on Friday in what was supposed to the curtain raiser to the 2020-21 season.

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