Everton as a club, their players and fans, aren’t very popular in France on Friday morning.
In all the ways the French media could have been left unimpressed, they have been, and L’Equipe’s match report brings it all together.
‘It’s always the same thing, it shouldn’t have been awakened. Everton fans should have been left to their despair and their players to their mediocrity. But it’s the charm of the teams of the Kingdom in difficulty: confronted with their technical or collective limits of the moment or always, they return to their roots, blocks and long balls, cut-throat tackles and ariel engagement.’
Even without the fighting, the match is being styled as the Battle of Goodison Park, in which Lyon had to enforce their superior football against a tide of snarling Everton players up for the most primeval form of football.
The French can do stereotypes too then.
Everton’s captain is the example pushed forward repeatedly: ‘Ashley Williams knows a lot about bullying. His wrestling physique is often used to put pressure on opponents.’
Despite all of this, L’Equipe say Lyon won both the physical battle and the football battle.
The return match in France, on November 2nd, should be interesting.