Lyon continues to struggle ahead of Champions League

PARIS (AP) — If Lyon was looking for a confidence boost in Caen ahead of its trip to Manchester City next week, the seven-time French champion got the opposite on Saturday.

Against a side reduced to 10 men after 55 minutes, Lyon drew 2-2 in Normandy following a late equalizer from Ferland Mendy which spared the blushes of another defeat. Lyon will travel to England full of doubts for the start of its Champions League campaign.

Lyon has already lost twice, and is lagging eight points behind league leader Paris Saint-Germain after only five rounds.

Set up down the left side near the area, Mendy dribbled past a defender and into the box to unleash a low shot at the far post that beat goalkeeper Brice Samba the 89th minute.

Nabil Fekir put Lyon in front from a free kick at the stroke of halftime. Claudio Beauvue leveled for Caen against his former club from the penalty spot in the 53rd.

Just two minutes later, Caen defender Alexander Djiku jeopardized his team’s chances by getting sent off following a high foot in the face of Fekir.

Caen took the lead against the run of play when Prince Oniangue headed home a free kick from Morocco international Faycal Fajr.

At fault on Fekir’s goal, Samba made a couple of good saves in the second half but could not stop Mendy’s effort from crossing the line. Tempers frayed in stoppage time and Caen lost another player after Baissama Sankoh received a red card for headbutting Rafael.

Making his debut for Lyon after joining from Celtic Glasgow, Moussa Dembele touched only a few balls and could not be a factor.

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More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/tag/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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