Kluivert Class Earns Barca Win Over Lyon
BARCELONA, Oct 10 The class of Patrick Kluivert earned Barcelona a 2-0 win over Olympique Lyon in the Champions League on Wednesday as the Dutch international nodded in the first goal and won the penalty that led to the second in a tense group F clash.
A combination of poor finishing and some fine goalkeeping from Gregory Coupet kept Lyon in the game before Kluivert's late show brought Barca's second win of the campaign and kept them on course for a place in the second phase.
Xavi's strong run and chipped through ball set up the first strike on 78 minutes, with Kluivert looping his header over the stranded Coupet.
The Dutchman then won a penalty with four minutes to go, turning sharply in the area to provoke what referee Kim Milton Nielsen saw as a trip from Edmilson.
Brazilian forward Rivaldo, who had otherwise been disappointing in his first Barca appearance since August, converted the penalty.
Lyon had clearly come to defend, with a view to hitting Barca on the counter-attack, but their backline looked to be in a generous mood early on.
A miscued backpass from Claudio Cacapa almost led to the first goal in a bizarre incident after three minutes.
Coupet was well off his line but as he rushed back he managed to head the ball on to his own crossbar.
Rivaldo, following up, headed powerfully down but Coupet pulled off a magnificent reflex save, diving low to his right to keep the scores level.
Geovanni got on the end of another poor backpass on 10 minutes, muscling his way in to create another opening for Rivaldo.
The Brazilian took his shot first time but it flashed high and wide.
For Lyon, Sidney Govou and Pierre Laigle both saw shots well saved by Barca keeper Roberto Bonano on rare forays forward.
Meanwhile, the home side kept pressing forward, with the introduction of Javier Saviola at the start of the second half only increasing their menace.
He teed up Kluivert to blast over on 50 minutes and the Argentine hooked the ball over after his colleague returned the favour with a neat lay-off just past the hour.
Kluivert finally broke through thanks to Xavi's incisive pass with 12 minutes to go and that effectively settled the game against a French side that offered little in attack.