Puel blames draw on tiredness
Lyon coach Claude Puel put a brave face on his side's 1-1 draw at rock-bottom Arles - a result that failed to help his chances of remaining in charge of the club.
Puel's position will be reviewed by Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas at the end of the month after a poor start to the campaign that finds them 14th in the Ligue 1 table after ten games.
Les Gones had looked on the road to recovery with four successive wins in all competitions before they were held by an Arles side who had managed just a single point before yesterday.
Franck Dja Djedje fired Arles ahead in the first half and while Jimmy Briand levelled soon after the break a winner never arrived as the newly-promoted hosts stood firm.
"On the face of the game Arles earned their point," said Puel, who said his side had shown signs of weariness after their 2-0 UEFA Champions League win over Benfica on Wednesday night.
"We did not make a good start to the match. We never managed to show our quality and move forward. The system was changed at the break, but the players were tired and failed to set the pace that was required.
"We are disappointed because this is not a good result, especially given results elsewhere. The aftermath of the Champions League is always complicated. We must return to action every three days and that can be hard, but the championship is very long."
Puel is eager to get back to winning ways in the Coupe de la Ligue when they host Paris St Germain in a last-16 clash on Wednesday night.
"Nothing is written and final. My attitude does not change - I'm trying to keep some clarity," Puel said at a press conference today. "The Coupe de la Ligue is a competition which is worthwhile, like any other. We have a tough game against PSG, but there is no scale to the importance of each match. We must win every one of them."
Puel's hopes have not been helped by the news first-choice goalkeeper Hugo Lloris will miss the match with a back complaint, meaning Remy Vercoutre will deputise in his place.
Elsewhere, defending champions Marseille will travel to second division side Guingamp, who knocked out Ligue 1 leaders Rennes 3-1 on their home turf in the previous round.
The stand-out tie of the round will be played on Tuesday night when high-flying St Etienne host Bordeaux.
St Etienne's blistering start to the season has cooled in recent weeks and they are winless in three games, while Bordeaux's recent resurgence suffered a setback with a 2-0 home defeat against Brest on the weekend.
There are all-Ligue 1 clashes between Lille and Caen as well as Monaco and Lorient, while newly-promoted Montpellier will look to continue their impressive start to the season at home to Ajaccio.
Auxerre are at home to Bastia while Boulogne, who knocked out Toulouse in the previous round, travel to Valenciennes.