Women's Champions League final preview: Chelsea vs Barcelona
Sunday, 16 May 2021
There will be a new name on the trophy this year as Chelsea play Barcelona in Gothenburg on Sunday.
Article top media content
Chelsea play Barcelona in the UEFA Women's Champions League final at 21:00 CET on Sunday 16 May at Gamla Ullevi, Gothenburg.
Neither team have previously lifted this trophy but the winners will be the first club to have clinched both the men's and women's UEFA Champions Leagues. Chelsea are in their debut final while Barcelona have reached the showpiece once before, losing 4-1 to Lyon in Budapest two years ago.
Lyon's five-year reign is over, however, after they lost in the quarter-finals to Paris Saint-Germain, themselves then beaten by Barça. As for Chelsea, they defeated Bayern München in the last four, meaning this will be the first final without either a German or French team since the 2007, when Arsenal – with current Chelsea manager Emma Hayes on their coaching staff – defeated Sweden's Umeå.
Chelsea go into the game at full strength other than the long-term absence of right-back Maren Mjelde. Barcelona, however, not only have centre-back Andrea Pereira suspended but the inspirational Alexia Putellas trained separately on Saturday with a thigh heavily strapped, while forward Asisat Oshoala is not long returned from foot surgery.
View from the camps
Emma Hayes, Chelsea manager: "The players are all in good spirits. We've got a lot of experience in the dressing room and are just looking forward to kick-off. For [Barcelona] to knock out both Man. City and PSG is an indication of their qualities. They are very efficient going forward, defensively they're very good. We have to play to our strengths and make sure we focus on our strong attributes.
"I will be every one of [the fans] during the game. We're sad all our friends and family can't be here but the realities are we are used to that and we are one game away from being European champions. I wouldn't want to be in another dressing room. The best two teams in Europe are in the final and it will make a wonderful spectacle."
Magdalena Eriksson, Chelsea captain: "It feels surreal that we are here and will play here. I've played here so many times for my national team [Gamla Ullevi is the home of the Sweden women's team]. I'm really proud we've got this far and can't wait for the game.
"It will be a big challenge of course, Barcelona are a great team. Barcelona have amazing players up front and across the whole team. We know them, their strengths, we have a good plan of how to stop them and we'll do everything we can."
Lluís Cortés, Barcelona coach: "I think the feeling is good. We are about to play a historic game, we are very enthusiastic, we have ambitions, also confidence. The game is very different to Budapest  and the sensations are different. That day we had too much respect and fear of our opponents but now we have confidence. Chelsea are a very good team but we have our options.
"We are expecting a similar Chelsea to how they have been the whole season. We don't think they'd change that much for one opponent. They don't need possession, they are good in defence and don't need to have the ball to win the game, they've done that in the Champions League. But we are prepared to find some space against a more defensive block, and we know their weak points if we can put them under pressure."
Vicky Losada, Barcelona captain: "We've worked hard for two years. We've changed how we train but we play well together. Not just results but how we win. We are always all together, working ahead, we are stronger than we were – we don't want to miss our chance this time.
"We've been saying in the dressing room that it is a pity the fans won't be with us. We know we have a responsibility to them. We dream of the Champions League and we play for the girls who dream with us. We will fight to win the Champions League for them."
Meet the teams
Possible XI: Berger; Charles, Bright, Eriksson, Andersson; Leupolz, Ingle, Ji; Harder; Kirby, Kerr
Injured: Maren Mjelde (right-back)
Round of 32: Benfica 8-0agg
Round of 16: Atlético 3-0agg
Quarter-finals: Wolfsburg 5-1agg
Semi-finals: Bayern München 5-3agg
Season top scorer: Fran Kirby (6)
Previous best: semi-finals (2017/18, 2018/19)
2019/20: did not enter
- Only the second English finalists after London rivals Arsenal took the title in 2007.
Last six games: WWWLDW
Last match: Chelsea 5-0 Reading, 09/05
Where they stand: FA Women's Super League champions, FA Women's Cup round of 16, FA WSL Cup winners
Possible XI: Paños; Torrejón, Guijarro, Mapi León, Ouahabi; Losada, Hamraoui, Putellas; Graham Hansen, Hermoso, Martens
Suspended: Andrea Pereira (defender)
Injured: Andrea Falcón (forward/winger)
Doubtful: Alexia Putellas (midfielder)
Round of 32: PSV Eindhoven 8-2agg
Round of 16: Fortuna Hjørring 9-0agg
Quarter-finals: Manchester City 4-2agg
Semi-finals: Paris Saint-Germain 3-2agg
Season top scorer: Jenni Hermoso (6)
Previous best: runners-up (2018/19)
- Were the first finalists from Spain in 2019 and now hope to be the champions from a fifth different nation after Germany, Sweden, England and France.
Last six games: WWWWDW
Last match: Granadilla Tenerife 0-1 Barcelona, 09/05
Where they stand: Primera División champions, Copa de la Reina semi-final
Referee: Riem Hussein (Germany)
Assistants: Katrin Rafalski (Germany), Sara Telek (Austria)
Fourth Official: Katalin Kulcsár (Hungary)
VAR: Bastian Dankert (Germany)
Assistant VAR: Christian Dingert (Germany)
Reserve Assistant Referee: Julia Magnusson (Sweden)
Venue: Gamla Ullevi
No tickets will be on sale for the final at the Gamla Ullevi stadium
Due to current restrictions implemented by the local authorities in Sweden, the UEFA Women's Champions League will be played behind closed doors and therefore no tickets will be on sale.
UEFA Women's Champions League
2019/20: Wolfsburg (FRA) 1-3 Lyon (FRA) – San Sebastián
2018/19: Lyon (FRA) 4-1 Barcelona (ESP) – Budapest
2017/18: Wolfsburg (GER) 1-4 aet Lyon (FRA) – Kyiv
2016/17: Lyon (FRA) 0-0 aet, 7-6 pens Paris Saint-Germain (FRA) – Cardiff
2015/16: Wolfsburg (GER) 1-1 aet, 3-4 pens Lyon (FRA) – Reggio Emilia
2014/15: FFC Frankfurt (GER) 2-1 Paris Saint-Germain (FRA) – Berlin
2013/14: Tyresö (SWE) 3-4 Wolfsburg (GER) – Lisbon
2012/13: Wolfsburg (GER) 1-0 Lyon (FRA) – London (Chelsea)
2011/12: Lyon (FRA) 2-0 FFC Frankfurt (GER) – Munich
2010/11: Lyon (FRA) 2-0 Turbine Potsdam (GER) – London (Fulham)
2009/10: Lyon (FRA) 0-0 aet, 6-7 pens Turbine Potsdam (GER) – Getafe
UEFA Women's Cup
2008/09: Zvezda-2005 (RUS) 1-7 agg Duisburg (GER)
2007/08: Umeå (SWE) 3-4 agg FFC Frankfurt (GER)
2006/07: Umeå (SWE) 0-1 agg Arsenal (ENG)
2005/06: Turbine Potsdam (GER) 2-7 agg FFC Frankfurt (GER)
2004/05: Djurgården (SWE) 1-5 agg Turbine Potsdam (GER)
2003/04: Umeå (SWE) 8-0 agg FFC Frankfurt (GER)
2002/03: Umeå (SWE) 7-1 agg Fortuna Hjørring (DEN)
2001/02: Umeå (SWE) 0-2 FFC Frankfurt (GER) – Frankfurt
The UEFA Women's Champions League will have a radical new format and financial model for 2021/22: read more.