PROFILE | Yvon Mvogo left over-exposed by leaky Lorient defence

The year 2023 proved to be a challenging one for Yvon Mvogo, primarily due to a severe injury that kept him off the pitch for several months, which deprived him of the opportunity to participate in his second World Cup with the Swiss national team in 2022. Despite a complicated start to the season, FC Lorient can once again rely on the dependable presence of Mvogo.

Arguably, November 8, 2022, marked one of the darkest days in Mvogo’s football career. On that day, Lorient faced Paris Saint-Germain at the Stade du Moustoir in the 14th game week of the season. Despite a promising beginning, with Mvogo making a splendid save against now-former PSG player Neymar, the dream start for the Swiss goalkeeper turned into a nightmare.

Eight minutes into the game, under pressure from Neymar, Mvogo failed to clear the ball, landing it directly at Hugo Ekitike’s feet. Ekitike then passed the ball to Neymar, who capitalised on the mistake with a low shot, scoring a goal. The 29-year-old goalkeeper acknowledged his error, recognizing that his mistake directly led to the conceded goal. Additionally, during this sequence, he managed to injure himself severely, leading to his substitution. Mvogo suffered a tendon injury in his knee, sidelining him for the next five months and causing him to miss the World Cup in Qatar.

Mvogo left exposed by leaky Lorient defence

Five months later, the Swiss keeper made a triumphant return against Toulouse. Coincidentally, the following week, Lorient faced PSG again at the Parc des Princes, and this time there were no injuries or errors on Mvogo’s part. Lorient secured a 3-1 victory on Parisian soil. Mvogo concluded the season with stellar performances as Les Merlus confirmed their place in Ligue 1 for the following season.

The current season has had a tumultuous start for Régis Le Bris’s men. Despite the positive signs displayed when he assumed the managerial role, Lorient finds itself stagnant in the lower half of the league. The team are struggling with one of the worst defensive records in the league, but not all blame falls on Mvogo. The Swiss keeper contends with a defence that allows many shots per game, making him frequently active in his goalkeeping duties. To highlight his importance to Lorient this season, he ranks among the best goalkeepers in the league based on post-expected goals, according to Opta.

It appears that Les Merlus will have to fight until the end to remain in Ligue 1 this season. If they manage to secure their position, there is no doubt that the Swiss goalkeeper will have made a significant contribution.

GFFN | Jerry Morel Takou

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