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Against Sochaux, Claude Puel is confident struggling Lyon playmaker Yoann Gourcuff can regain his best form.

After a poor cameo performance against Paris Saint-Germain in midweek, Yoann Gourcuff’s form has come under question from the French media, though Olympique Lyonnais general manager Claude Puel has leapt to the playmaker’s defence, backing him to come good against Sochaux in Ligue 1 this weekend.

Gourcuff was cited as something of a bottleneck for OL on Wednesday evening, when they went down to PSG 2-1 in the Coupe de la Ligue. His play was ponderous and rather laboured, crucially slowing down les Gones’ attacking movements. Nevertheless, Puel will stick by the France international for Saturday evening’s encounter against les Lionceaux.

“I usually defend my players,” Puel told Le Progres. “Yoann Gourcuff, for example, will get everything sorted. He will find a spot against Sochaux and will show he’s still there.

After a difficult start to the season, Lyon have won five of their last seven fixtures in all competitions, and despite slipping up in both of their last two games, Puel has backed his side to rebound.

“I have a competitive squad, who should validate against Sochaux what they have been doing in the last month,” he explained.

Sochaux have yet to pick up a point away from home, so Lyon will expect to be toasting a win after the fixture at the Stade Gerland on Saturday.

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