Lyon close in on title at Auxerre

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Olympique Lyonnais bounced back from their home defeat to Paris St Germain with a 3-0 victory away at Auxerre on Sunday.

updated: February 25, 2007 10:51 IST
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Olympique Lyonnais, who are looking to join Saint-Etienne and Marseille as the only French teams to have won four consecutive titles, have been stuttering somewhat in recent weeks. They were winless in four matches ahead of Sunday's Ligue 1 visit to Auxerre, including a demoralising defeat on penalties to PSV in the Champions League quarter-finals and a domestic loss to PSG last weekend. But they dominated from the start against Guy Roux's side, and took the lead in the 27th minute through Juninho. And in first-half stoppage time Michael Essien made it 2-0, Juninho the provider this time with a corner whipped in from the right. Lyon scored a third ten minutes after the break, Brazilian defender Cris stooping to head in Florent Malouda's free-kick. 3-0 the final score. Lyon now have 69 points from 34 matches, and need two more wins to be absolutely certain of the French title. Second-placed Lille are a massive 11 points behind on 58 points, having played one match less than Lyon. Auxerre, who suffered their first home loss of the campaign, are sixth. (AP)