Rayan Cherki is considered one of the greatest talents in football. However, current coach Pierre Sage is not banking on him, so at the age of 20, the Frenchman is looking for his first transfer.
The date of 19 October 2019 was written, a quite ordinary day for many people. For Rayan Cherki, 16-year-old Olympique Lyon footballer, an exceptional day. In the match against Dijon, which ended in a 0:0 draw, he came on for the last 7 minutes and thus scored his first minutes in professional football at the highest level.
A month later, he even made his Champions League debut in a match against Zenit St. Petersburg. During that season, Lyon reached the semi-finals of the millionaire competition. Cherki thus played 15 minutes of the Champions League semi-final match the day after his 17th birthday. Some footballers don’t make it to the Champions League semi-finals in their entire career, Cherki played in his very first season.
Cherki in Lyon
The following season, he had already appeared in 27 matches in the French top flight. He played just 677 minutes, which is not much for the portion of matches he played in. However, on 2 September 2020, Cherki scored his opening goal for Lyon’s A team in a cup match against Ajaccio. In total, he scored 4 goals and 4 assists for the season. We must not forget that it was his first full season among adults.
However, even this beautiful story has one pretty big flaw. Apart from the goals and assists, Cherki also picked up a red card. In the match against the Mets, 3-1 to Lyon, he got himself sent off in the 3rd minute of the second half. He missed the following match against PSG.
By that time, teams like Real Madrid, Barcelona and French league rivals PSG were already interested in the Lyon starlet. However, Lyon’s management described their player as unsellable. In the 2021/22 season, guilty of injuries, Cherki started just 22 games in which he registered 2 goals and 4 assists.
The 2022/23 season was the most prolific in terms of goals and assists. The offensive midfielder played a serving of 2,311 minutes, which is roughly the same serving as in all other seasons for Lyon combined. He was one of the most important players for his club. He also managed to score 5 goals and assist 5 more.
Lyon’s start to this season has not been good at all. After 14 rounds, it is still in last place in Ligue 1 with only 7 points. Moreover, it managed to win only one single match, so the remaining points were gained by Lyon players in draw matches. They are already 6 points behind the last non-relegation place.
Moreover, Rayan Cherki is not having a breathtaking season. He has not impressed the new manager Pierre Sage in 14 matches and has not scored a single assist, according to foreign media. Lyon are no longer calling their still 20-year-old offspring unsellable and have set his price tag at just €20 million. Even the biggest European clubs are now going to fight for the offensive midfielder.
Source: Lyon, Ligue 1, Twitter
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