UEFA Women’s Champions League: Round of 16 first-leg review
Credit: VAVEL ESP/Noelia Déniz

UEFA Women’s Champions League: Round of 16 first-leg review

Barcelona, Lyon and Wolfsburg make light work of the competition

Sophie Lawson

It’s the seeded teams who hold nearly all the cards after the round of 16 first legs of this year’s UEFA Women’s Champions League.

FC Zürich 0-2 Bayern München

Given a slice of luck away to Zürich, Munich took the lead 12 minutes in when goalkeeper Elvira Herzog let Sara Däbritz’s effort from range skip off of her gloves, bounce onto her head and drop into the goal. The lead wasn’t stretched until just after the half hour Dominika Škorvánková volleyed Däbritz’s neat cross home.

Comfortable throughout the match, there is little for the Bavarians to fear in the return leg, although Thomas Wörle will be left wanting his team to show a more clinical edge.

Linköping 0-2 Paris Saint-Germain

Not having a vintage season, the Swedish champions were set to be under the cosh when they welcomed the Parisiennes to the Linköping Arena. Doing well to hold their visitors at bay, the host’s resolve crumbled just before the break when Marie-Antoinette Katoto volleyed Grace Geyoro’s deft cross into the back of the net.

Given a trial by fire in the league, fourth choice goalkeeper, Julia Nyström was again caught out in the second half. The 17-year-old beaten by the deflection as Wang Shaung made history to become the first Chinese player to score in the competition, her strike ten minutes from time creating enough of an advantage for the French side.

VfL Wolfsburg 4-0 Atlético Madrid

Despite a slow start, Wolfsburg managed to find top gear and carve a path through their opposition, right to the back of Lola Gallardo’s net. Unable to stop the ball it squeezed out from under her arm and in via the post, Lola was left to pick the ball out of her own net again three minutes later following Ewa Pajor’s header. With a goal to her name already, the young Pole then set Caroline Graham Hansen up for the third of the night before Pernille Harder made it four with her second.

The match not without its consequences for Wolfsburg, the hosts dealt a blow part-way through the first half when Lara Dickenmann was forced off with what has been confirmed as an ACL tear.

Ajax 0-4 Olympique Lyonnais

What was always set to be a stern test, welcoming the reigning champions to Duivendrecht, there was little Ajax could do to stop Lyon from claiming a huge first leg advantage. With a deft touch to take the ball from her marker, Amel Majri opened the scoring 12 minutes in in the Netherlands before Selma Bacha made it two just before the half hour with a low free kick. Notching her 40 Champions League goal, Ada Hegerberg fired the third of the night in before Izzy Christiansen put the tie to bed in the dying moments.

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Barcelona 5-0 Glasgow City

Steaming away from the opposition, Barcelona were the big winners over the first legs, hitting Glasgow for five, the Scots unable to muster much of a reply. Taking the lead 12 minutes in through Kheira Hamraoui’s chip, the hosts had to wait 26 minutes for their next, Aitana Bonmatí’s low strike enough to beat Lee Alexander. Sloppy defending saw the visitors ship their third, the ball bouncing back and forth in the box before Patri Guijarro turned it home.

The second half saw more of the same, the Catalans claiming a fourth when Andressa Alves swung the ball around the inside of Alexander, curling it between the ‘keeper and her near post. The match wrapped up by Mapi León ten minutes from time, the visitors still unable to clear their lines, the defender able to pick out the bottom corner from 19-yards.  

Chelsea 1-0 Fiorentina

In the lowest scoring match of the round, the English champions were left frustrated after taking an eighth minute lead through a Karen Carney penalty. On top but coming up empty-handed in front of goal time and again, there was little for the Blues to do as Stéphanie Öhrström denied them time after time. The match one of the few that remains finely poised for the second leg – despite the clear dominance of one side.

LSK 1-1 Brøndby

Having knocked the same opposition out of the competition last season, LSK looked to go one better than last year and dig out a first leg advantage. Taking the lead on the half hour through Guro Reiten, the hosts were pegged back five minutes later when Emilie Henriksen slotted the ball just under the bar from 25-yards. Following a relatively even first leg, LSK vs BIF is still the tie that could really go either way.

Rosengård 2-3 Slavia Praha

In a match packed with goals, neither side could stamp their dominance. Having taken the lead 14 minutes in through Veronika Pincová’s low strike at a corner, the visitors were pulled back eight minutes later by Lisa-Marie Utland, the Norwegian arriving to touch Anja Mittag’s cross over the line. Similar to Utland, Tereza Kožárová put the ball home late in the first half to have the side from Prague up at the break.

Again, the hosts couldn’t be kept down and Mittag levelled the scores seven minutes into the second half, Nathalie Björn opting for route one to spring the ball over the midfield and give the German something to race onto. Taking a touch to take Barbora Votíková out of the game, the veteran attacker slipped the ball into the open net mid-tumble. But again, the visitors claimed the lead, Petra Divišová stunner from 20-yards too much for Zećira Mušović to cope with as it dropped just under the bar.