Both sides remain undefeated in this season’s competition and Barca will feel confident of seeing off Bruno Genesio’s men in the second leg at Camp Nou on March 13.
The La Liga leaders dominated the match but lacked accuracy up front; Lionel Messi, unusually, had an off day while Luis Suarez’s difficulties away from home in Europe’s premier club competition continue.
They also had Marc Andre ter Stegen to thank for keeping a clean sheet at the other end, with the German keeper making two fine saves.
Lyon had the first two shots on target and it took a couple of superb saves from Ter Stegen to deny the hosts.
He stretched to his left to parry a vicious low shot by Hassem Aouar in the fifth minute before making a one-handed save to tip a 25-meter Terrier missile onto his crossbar.
Barca forward Ousmane Dembele came close in the 19th minute when he dribbled past Leo Dubois on the left flank, only for keeper Anthony Lopes to deny him in a one-on-one.
The visitors had the upper hand with 25 attempts but were uncharacteristically wasteful with only five on target – while they also spurned several good counter-attacking opportunities.
With a bit more care in the second leg, they’ll fancy their chances at reaching the last eight.