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Lair, Abily and Tonazzi commit to Lyon cause

Friday 14 December 2012 15.19 CET
Patrice Lair is on course for a third successive European title as Lyon coach

UEFA Women's Champions League holders Olympique Lyonnais have rewarded coach Patrice Lair and players Camille Abily and Laëtitia Tonazzi with new deals.

Lair, 51, who succeeded Farid Benstiti in summer 2010 and has guided Lyon to back-to-back European crowns and league titles, is now contracted until 2015 with an option for a further season. "I could have earned more [elsewhere], but that is not my aim," said Lair, who also steered his team to French Cup glory last term. "I am targeting more satisfaction and I think there is more to win with this squad. To leave now would have been a kind of betrayal."

Like her coach, midfielder Abily, 28, is also tied to the club until June 2015 after committing herself to two more years. A former player of Lair at Montpellier Hérault SC, she rejoined Lyon in 2010 following spells with Los Angeles Sol, Paris Saint-Germain FC and FC Gold Pride. French player of the year on two occasions, she has lifted six league titles in her homeland, three domestic cups and has been capped 109 times by Les Bleues.

Tonazzi, meanwhile, has extended her terms by a year until June 2014. The striker has scored 12 goals in 11 league games for the Division 1 Féminine leaders this campaign, having moved in the summer from FCF Juvisy where she spent a decade.

Lyon, seeking to reach a fourth successive UEFA Women's Champions League final, play FC Malmö in the first leg of their last-eight tie on 20 or 21 March, with the return scheduled for the following week. At the midway stage of the French season they are yet to drop a point.

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