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Chelsea 0-4 Barcelona: Barça surge to first Women's Champions League title

Barcelona scored four times in the first half to win their first ever UEFA Women's Champions League crown.

2021 final highlights: Chelsea 0-4 Barcelona
2021 final highlights: Chelsea 0-4 Barcelona

Match in brief

Barcelona produced a sensational display to earn UEFA Women's Champions League final victory against Chelsea in Gothenburg, becoming the competition's eighth different winners.

Barcelona were quick off the mark against Chelsea
Barcelona were quick off the mark against ChelseaUEFA via Getty Images

On their final debut two years ago, Barcelona fell 4-0 down to Lyon within half an hour. This time, they surged 4-0 up in little more time – and they took the lead inside the opening minute, after Lieke Martens hit the bar and Fran Kirby's clearance ricocheted in off the luckless Melanie Leupolz.

Both teams then went close in a chaotic spell, but on 12 minutes Leupolz fouled Jenni Hermoso in the Chelsea box, enabling Alexia Putellas to dispatch a penalty. Alexia, a pre-match injury doubt, then played a brilliant ball to set up the determined Aitana Bonmati for the third.

Watch the match in full

The other star on the Barça left, Martens, produced a fine solo run and cutback for Graham Hansen to make it four on 36 minutes. For Chelsea, there was no coming back.

Where the final was won and lost

Barcelona celebrate their victory
Barcelona celebrate their victoryGetty Images

Barcelona have a perfect record in the Spanish league this season, which they won with eight games to spare, and showed their intent with their quarter-final first-leg display against Manchester City in Monza. But few would have predicted what happened in the first half here.

Seven of the starters tonight began the 2019 final against Lyon and many had spoken of the hard lesson learned that day. Now it was Chelsea's turn to be undone in their debut final, with Alexia and Martens as unplayable on the Barcelona left as the Blaugrana had found Ada Hegerberg in Budapest.

The final as it happened

With Hermoso so difficult to pin down up front, Bonmati keeping up her stellar form this season, and with Graham Hansen allowing no respite for Chelsea on their own left, the English champions just could not contain their opponents until the game was gone.

Barcelona coach Lluís Cortés enjoys the triumph
Barcelona coach Lluís Cortés enjoys the triumphAFP via Getty Images

Pernille Harder, twice beaten in finals with Wolfsburg, played with a determination that her own final disappointment would not be repeated. But for once this season it was not Harder, Kirby and Sam Kerr conjuring chances at will for Chelsea; the Blues' defence instead found themselves at the mercy of one of the deadliest attacking displays in this competition's 20-year-history.

Reaction

Lluís Cortés, Barcelona coach: "My idea was to show these girls that, some day, if you want it you can reach this level. That's something I'm very proud of. Before the game, when I saw Alexia, she asked, 'Do you trust me?' And I said 'Yes, I trust you – here we go.'"

Barcelona's Bonmati lost for words
Barcelona's Bonmati lost for words

Aitana Bonmati, Player of the Match: "I'm lost for words. I don't know how I feel but I know I'm very proud of this team because we deserve it. We've been working very hard since the final in Budapest [in 2019] and we set ourselves a challenge, which was to get to another final and win it. And that's what we did."

Emma Hayes, Chelsea coach: "It's been a wonderful season for us. Today was difficult for us because the game was over before it began. To concede so early, then we had two good chances before they won the penalty. I'm proud of the second-half performance because the players gave everything. Congratulations to Barcelona: they're worthy of their title."

Millie Bright, Chelsea defender: "We didn't have the start to the game that we wanted and, in these sort of games, you can't afford to give away sloppy goals. Congratulations to Barcelona – incredible team and they deserve it. We'll be back better."

Bright: 'A lot to learn'
Bright: 'A lot to learn'

Key stats

  • Barcelona's 4-0 win is the biggest margin of victory in a final since the Women's Champions League era began in 2009/10.
  • Barcelona are the first club to have won both the men's and women's Champions League.
  • Leupolz's own goal for Barça's opener was the fastest goal scored in the Women's Champions League this season.
  • Graham Hansen became the second Norwegian player to score in the final after Ada Hegerberg, who has struck five times in four showpiece appearances.
  • Barcelona's Asisat Oshoala is the first player from Africa to win this competition.
  • The Spanish side have failed to score in just one of their last 24 Women's Champions League matches.
  • Barcelona have scored inside the opening 15 minutes in six of their last nine Women's Champions League matches.
Watch Barcelona lift the trophy
Watch Barcelona lift the trophy

Line-ups

Chelsea: Berger; Carter, Bright, Eriksson, Charles; Leupolz (Reiten 46), Ingle, Ji (Cuthbert 73); Kirby, Harder, Kerr (England 73)

Barcelona: Paños; Torrejón (Crnogorčević 82), Guijarro, María León, Ouahabi (Serrano 82); Bonmati, Hamraoui, Putellas (Losada 71); Graham Hansen (Caldentey 62), Hermoso (Oshoala 72), Martens

Next season

The UEFA Women's Champions League will have a radical new format and financial model for 2021/22: read more.