Women’s Champions League: Glas gives Bayern first-leg edge over Chelsea

The Swedish defender’s second-half strike gave Bayern Munich a 2-1 win in the first leg of their semi-final

Chelsea’s defensive fragility was brutally exposed as they lost 2-1 against Bayern Munich in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final.

Desperate to break the semi-final glass ceiling, having twice failed to reach the final, Chelsea instead hit the Glas ceiling after the Swedish defender Hanna Glas provide the assist for Sydney Lohmann’s opener and scored a stunning solo goal, sandwiching the leveller deflected in by the former Bayern captain Melanie Leupolz.

“It’s half-time,” the Chelsea manager, Emma Hayes, said. “We’ve got an away goal and it’s half-time. The lesson for our team sometimes is you don’t win the tie this round.”

After the final whistle had ended a bruising second half in the 2-2 draw against Manchester City on Wednesday as Chelsea took a point from their rivals and closed in on retention of their league title, Hayes had said she was “relieved”. What did she want to see done differently in Munich? “Do what I want you to do, don’t do something else,” was the message from the manager.

Perhaps it was a nervousness at being 180 minutes away from a first Champions League final that rattled the Chelsea ranks but they looked far from the fluid, potent side Hayes would have wanted to see and that we have gotten used to this season. Instead, it was the out-of-form Bayern who exploded out of the blocks and put the make-shift visiting defence under pressure.

A long-term injury to the right‑back Maren Mjelde meant Jess Carter once again started while the ongoing absence of the captain, Magda Eriksson, meant Sophie Ingle partnered England’s Millie Bright in the centre of the defence.

After a stunning late save prevented defeat in Manchester, the goalkeeper Ann‑Katrin Berger was at fault for the opener. Glas beat the left‑back Jonna Andersson and Berger’s mistimed punch skidded towards Lohmann who headed past her into the open net.

Hayes had spoken of the resilience of her side after the game on Wednesday and the confidence that gave her heading to Germany: “Sometimes when you don’t play your game plan exactly how you want to you have to dig yourselves out, you have to gut something out,” she had said.

A shot from Melanie Leupolz (not pictured) spins into the net to give Chelsea a useful away goal.
A shot from Melanie Leupolz (not pictured) spins into the net to give Chelsea a useful away goal. Photograph: Sebastian Widmann/Uefa/Getty Images

That mental toughness was tested further as Bayern, buoyed by their lead, pounded forward. The equaliser came from a familiar face, literally and figuratively: Guro Reiten’s free‑kick was headed by Marina Hegering into the face of the former Bayern star Leupolz and rebounded in.

The Bayern manager, Jens Scheuer, had said he was looking forward to the tactical battle but acknowledged his team would “have to play at our limits, at our best” to overcome the Women’s Super League champions. They did. With almost an hour played Andersson sat back as Glas raced towards the box, cut inside the hesitant Swede and lashed high into the net.

Scheuer went straight to Glas on the final whistle. “I went to her and congratulated her, I was just surprised that she can even score with her left foot, I underestimated her a little bit,” he said with a laugh. “She is one of the best right-backs in the world.”

Favourites going into this tie, with Bayern having laboured to a 3-2 win against Turbine Potsdam four days after back-to-back defeats to end a 26-game winning run before this first leg, Chelsea’s Champions League final dream looked to be unravelling. All is not lost, they have an away goal but, as they found two years ago against Lyon, returning to Kingsmeadow a goal down against one of Europe’s best is not an easy turnaround.

For all the talk of the strength of the squad and their attack, a lack of depth at the back has been laid bare by the injuries to Eriksson and Mjelde, something Hayes will undoubtedly be looking to address in the summer. “She’s our captain, we’ve lost experience with Maren and Magda, two really senior leaders in our side. So yes, of course I think it’s a loss but it’s up to the rest of the group to make sure it doesn’t become one we talk about,” Hayes said. “Yes I plan to strengthen in the summer but I’ve got to put all my focus on getting to the Champions League final next week.”

Contributor

Suzanne Wrack

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
Chelsea see off Bayern to set up first Champions League final with Barcelona
Fran Kirby scored twice as Chelsea beat Bayern Munich 4-1, and 5-3 on aggregate, to face Barcelona in the Champions League final

Suzanne Wrack at Kingsmeadow

02, May, 2021 @1:52 PM

Article image
Chelsea bid to buck colossal trend by overcoming Bayern Munich in last four | Suzanne Wrack
Emma Hayes’s side must turn around a deficit if they are to become only the second English team to reach the final

Suzanne Wrack

30, Apr, 2021 @3:20 PM

Article image
‘Dreams come true’: Hayes emotional as Chelsea reach Champions League final
Chelsea manager Emma Hayes felt confident of a win after seeing Bayern’s formation while their manager, Jens Scheuer, said: ‘Chelsea were not the best team over two legs’

Suzanne Wrack at Kingsmeadow

02, May, 2021 @3:46 PM

Article image
Chelsea 4-1 Bayern Munich (agg: 5-3): Women’s Champions League semi-final – as it happened
Minute-by-minute report: Late goals from Pernille Harder and Fran Kirby settled a match of unbearable drama put Chelsea into their first Champions League final

Rob Smyth

02, May, 2021 @1:41 PM

Article image
Women’s Champions League: Arsenal in Barcelona’s group, Chelsea with Wolfsburg
The reigning Women’s Super League champions Chelsea were handed a tough draw for the group stages of the new-look Women’s Champions League

Suzanne Wrack

13, Sep, 2021 @12:00 PM

Article image
Chelsea 0-4 Barcelona: women’s Champions League final player ratings
Keira Hamraoui and Lieke Martens were outstanding for Barcelona while Melanie Leupolz and Sophie Ingle had a tough night in Gothenburg

Louise Taylor

16, May, 2021 @10:21 PM

Article image
Chelsea hammer Fiorentina to reach Women’s Champions League last eight
Chelsea stormed into the quarter-finals of the Women’s Champions League with a 6-0 victory at Fiorentina with Fran Kirby scoring a hat-trick to earn them a 7-0 aggregate win

Marcus Christenson

31, Oct, 2018 @9:23 PM

Article image
Barcelona stun Chelsea with early blitz to win Women’s Champions League
Alexia Putellas, Aitana Bonmatí and Caroline Hansen all struck after Melanie Leupolz’s early own-goal as Barcelona beat Chelsea 4-0 to win their first ever Champions League title

Suzanne Wrack at the Ullevi Stadium

16, May, 2021 @8:52 PM

Article image
Wolfsburg run riot to dump Chelsea out of Women’s Champions League
Chelsea failed to qualify from the Champions League group stage after losing 4-0 to Wolfsburg, thanks to two goals apiece from Svenja Huth and Tabea Wasmuth

Jonathan Liew

16, Dec, 2021 @10:10 PM

Article image
Bayern Munich 2-1 Chelsea: WCL semi final, first leg – as it happened
Goals from Sydney Lohmann and Hanna Glas gave Bayern the win, but Melanie Leupolz’s away goal means Chelsea have hope

Daniel Harris

25, Apr, 2021 @5:31 PM