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Chelsea in the Women’s Champions League final after an exciting 2nd leg

A 4-1 win in the 2nd leg over Bayern, put Chelsea in the Women’s Champions League final for the first time in their history. Pernille Harder’s goal in the 84th minute proved crucial into securing the final spot where Blues will face Barcelona.

Bayern won the exciting first leg in München with 2-1 but nothing was decided yet. Chelsea started with their deadly attacking trio, Kerr-Kirby-Harder. A captain Magdalena Eriksson returned to the starting line-up after an injury break. Lea Schüller started for the Bavarians instead of Simone Laudehr, knowing they Bayern will probably have to score to go through.

1st half

We expected an attacking performance and both teams showed no fear in the first minutes, but it was Chelsea who got into the lead. In the 10th minute, Fran Kirby started her run from near the halfway line, passed to Sam Kerr in the middle who slipped a return pass to Kirby. The 27-year-old finished with a diagonal strike to the far post for the lead. Chelsea gained more confidence after the opener. Despite that, Bayern got their away goal in the 29th minute. Caro Simon sent a cross from the left that Chelsea cleared. But Sarah Zadrazil got a ball well outside the area and scored with a wonderful strike into the top left corner, leaving Berger’s no chance. Chelsea got back into the lead right before the break. After Lina Magull‘s foul on the edge of the area, Ji So-yun‘s free kick rebounded off the Bayern’s wall. The Korean international tried again and sent a low strike through the Bavarian defence near the far post into the net. Bayern have conceded more than a goal only for the 2nd time in their last 23 Women’s Champions League matches.

2nd half

Bayern started strongly in the 2nd half, looking for a potentially crucial second away goal, with Lea Schüller‘s header blocked in the last moment. It was a very dynamic end-to-end start of the second half with both teams getting into good position but lacking the last pass. Both teams were often trying with crosses but without success. In the late stage, Bayern dropped deeper, waiting for their breaks and set pieces. But it was Chelsea who managed to convert a set-piece. In the 84th minute, Jess Carter sent a cross in the area, Pernile Harder ran uncovered into the near post and headed the ball into. Bavarians knew that they have to net once more to keep their dreams of Champions League title alive. Sam Kerr had a chance to seal the tie in the 89th minute, but she just missed the target in a 1-on-1 situation with Laura Benkarth. Bayern pushed more and came very close to equalizing in the 90th minute when Ann-Kathrin Berger kept Chelsea’s dream alive with a fabulous leg save. In the extra time, Bavarians put everything into attack, including Laura Benkarth. After a lost ball in the midfield, Fran Kirby ran into the counter-attack and had no troubles scoring into the empty net.

We have witnessed an amazing tie, with an attacking performance from both sides, and Chelsea securing the final spot at the end. The Blues became the second English team to do so (after Arsenal) and will face Barcelona, who knocked out PSG, in the Women’s Champions League final on the 16th of May in Gotheburg.

Reactions

“The disappointment is huge. Chelsea weren’t the better team in two games but they were more effective. 4-1 is not deserved for us, especially after the score was 1-1, when we had good opportunities to take the lead ourselves. We still had good chances in the second half and even at 3-1 we still had chances that were stopped on the line.” – Jens Schauer, FC Bayern’s head coach

“We knew they were going to change something; we had to change something too. We dealt with their threats and they gave us the space to counter, which is where we got the first goal from. We conceded far too many set pieces but we adjusted that and put bodies on the line. I played them a video, before the game, of a UFC star talking to herself, saying ‘I am the best, I am the best.’ The cameras asked her about it afterwards and she said, ‘but I am the best.’ Someone described us as ‘mentality monsters’, and we are the best. We’re in this position because we deserve it.” – Emma Hayes, Chelsea’s head coach

via uefa.com

Score

Chelsea – FC Bayern München agg. 5-3

2nd leg

Chelsea – FC Bayern München 4-1 (2-1) 
Scorers: 10′ Fran Kirby (C), 29′ Sarah Zadrazil (B), 43′ Ji So-yun (C), 84′ Pernille Harder (C), 90+5′ Fran Kirby (C)
Yellow cards:
42′ Lina Magull (B), 47′ Jess Carter (C), 74′ Caro Simon (B), 83′ Lineth Beerensteyn (B)

1st leg

FC Bayern München – Chelsea 2-1 (1-1)
Scorers: 12′ Sydney Lohmann (B), 22′ Melanie Leupolz (C), 56′ Hanna Glas (B)
Yellow cards:
22′ Sarah Zadrazil (B), 33′ Pernille Harder (C)

 

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