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UWCL: Barcelona in the semi-final in front of a record crowd

Barcelona in the semi-final in front of a record crowd for the women’s game. The second leg of the Women’s Champions League quarter-final ended with a majestic 5-2 Barcelona win at the biggest European stadium, Camp Nou.

Women’s Champions League, Quarter-final, Leg 2

Tuesday, 30th of March

FC Barcelona – Real Madrid 5-2 (1-1) Agg. 8-3
Scorers: 8′ Mapi Leon (B), 16′ Olga Carmona (R) pen, 48′ Claudia Zornoza, 52′ Aitana Bonmati (B), 55′ Claudia Pina (B), 62′ Alexia Putellas (B), 70′ Caroline Graham Hansen (B)
Yellow cards: 12′ Lucia Roriguez (R), 15′ Irene Paredes (B), 90+1′ Alexia Putellas

1st leg, 23rd of March

Real Madrid – FC Barcelona 1-3 (1-0)

In the full house, Barcelona started strongly, looking for an early lead. Their efforts repaid very early, when already in the 8th minute, Mapi Leon sent a high cross into the penalty area. The curved cross surprised Real’s goalkeeper, Misa Rodriguez, and sailed over her head into the net for the opening goal of the night. Blaugrana kept her dominance and had a free-kick from a very promising position just minutes later, but Caroline Graham Hansen sent the strike into the wall. Out of their first real attack, Real Madrid were back in the game after the ball hit Irene Paredes in the hand in the area. Olga Carmona converted the penalty and even the scoresheet. The hosts had a lot of space and were always threatening to Las Blancas goal. In the 28th minute, Alexia found Graham Hansen with an amazing pass from the left side. The Norwegian international had a lot of time, but sent a strike over the bar. The guests managed to held onto a draw until half-time despite Barcelona being way better team.

Real Madrid players knew that they needed at least two goals to equalize the aggregate score. They started more aggressively than in the first half. Already 3 minutes in the second half, Real got a goal back in a spectacular way. Some meter over a centre line, Claudia Zornoza noticed that Sandra Panos is off her line and lobbed the goalkeeper with a fantastic strike. But it didn’t take long for Barcelona to get back. In the 52nd minute, Jennifer Hermoso sent Aitana Bonmati towards the box. The Spanish international set up herself and scored with a diagonal strike. 3 minutes later, Blaugrana was back in the lead. Claudia Pina received the ball in the corner of the area and finished it off with a wonderful lob over Misa Rodriguez. Alexia added the fourth after Misa, who didn’t have her best night, failed to keep Blaugrana’s captain strike out with the ball rolling over the line. In the 70th minute Fridolina Rolfo came down on the left-hand side, managed to cross in the goalkeeper area, where Bonmati deflected the ball towards Graham Hansen on the far post, who didn’t have a lot of work to score the 5th Barça’s goal of the night. After that, the pace of the game dropped slightly and Barcelona calmly cruised towards the victory.

What a great match-up we got to see over both legs of these Women’s Champions League quarter-final. Over 90,000 fans in the biggest European stadium created an amazing ambient, and this game will go down in the history books as one of the most exciting matches of the competition. Full of comebacks, loads of goals and at the end, with an expected and well-deserved semi-finalist, Barcelona. They will face either Wolfsburg or Arsenal in the Women’s Champions League semi-final.

 

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