The Barcelona, favorites of the Women's Champions League, qualified for their third final in a row by eliminating Chelsea (1-1) on Thursday. In the first leg, with a goal in the 4th minute from Norwegian Caroline Graham Hansen, Barcelona had already dominated the Blues (1-0). The Norwegian was still very strong on Thursday and multiplied the offensives in front of the Chelsea goal and the 72,000 spectators at Camp Nou.
After a counter led by Barça and Aitana Bonmati who fixed the Chelsea defense well, Graham Hansen opened the scoring with a flat foot (64th). But the Blues, who eliminated PSG in the quarter-finals, did not sink and quickly equalized (67th) despite a fine first save from goalkeeper Sandra Panos. On Chelsea's second shot of the game, the other Norwegian Guro Reiten, followed well (67th). As in the first leg, it was the two Norwegians who were the most visible on Thursday evening.
The first half was largely dominated by Barça, in particular because once again of a very complicated start to the match for the Londoners. They had a lot of trouble building the game and getting the balls out. On the other hand, Jonatan Giraldez's players tried a lot, with 9 shots and 5 corners, without really worrying the Blues goalkeeper. A goal was disallowed for Barça, because of a hand (8th).
In the second half, the Barcelona women faded away, less and less impressive, and lacked impact. Back on a match sheet for the first time since her serious injury in July 2022, Ballon d'Or Alexia Putellas, who had received a medical green light to play again, did not enter the field.
The Barcelona also had to do without English defender Lucy Bronze, who was injured in the first leg, hit in the right knee. Before the match, the Catalans' bus was greeted by a crowd of supporters near the stadium, an image that is still rare in women's football.
In the other semi-final return next Monday, Arsenal will host the Wolfsburg Louves at the Emirates Stadium, in front of more than 50,000 people (2-2 on the way). The final will take place on June 3 in Eindhoven.