Chelsea Women’s crazy own goal sums up their nightmare Champions League final
Chelsea failed in their bid to win a first ever Women’s Champions League after losing 4-0 to Barcelona – and their night was summed up by a comical own-goal in the opening minute of the match.
The Blues fell behind after just 35 seconds in Gothenburg when an attempted clearance from England international Fran Kirby cannoned back off Melanie Leupolz and looped into the corner of the net.
Things went from bad to worse for Chelsea just over 10 minutes later when Alexia Putellas converted a controversial penalty to give Barcelona a 2-0 advantage.
Aitana Bonmati then made it 3-0 before Caroline Graham Hansen added a fourth just before half-time to put the game beyond Chelsea’s grasp.
And that’s how things stayed into the second-half as the Blues fell short in their quest to win a first ever Women’s Champions League trophy.
Emma Hayes, who has led her side to the Women’s Super League and the Continental Cup this term, was still immensely proud of her players.
Speaking to BT Sport after the match, she said: “It’s been a wonderful season for us, I think today was difficult because the game was over before it began.
“I think that’s what’s so difficult to reflect on, I mean, to concede so early and then we had to good chances and then they got the second through a penalty, and if you think about it Anne hasn’t had a save to make the whole game yet we’ve lost the game 4-0.
“The damage was done but I’m proud of the second-half performance. The players gave it everything but congratulations to Barcelona, they’re worthy winners, they’re deserving of their title and I think it’s something that we will learn from.
“They were favourites for a reason and you have to stay in the game against this team and I think the early goal and the manner in which we conceded it and the penalty and we’re 2-0 down – and that’s the difference.
“Everything fell for them, everything, they got the rub of the green and they made that happen, they’re a wonderful team and they’re deserving winners – I certainly will be gracious in defeat.”
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Asked on about what Chelsea need to do to reach the next level, Hayes replied: “First of all, being in this position helps.
“I said to the players, look at the scoreboard, that’s got to be a motivating factor when they come back into pre-season because this will stay with them over the summer.
“I felt calm coming into the game but I feel like some of the inexperience cost us but they will grow from that and players will improve from that.
“They’re all really proud of the shift they put in and we have one the double, it’s not like we’re trophyless. I’m just gutted we didn’t get the chance to make a game of it.”
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