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The Guardian - UK
The Guardian - UK
Sarah Rendell

Barcelona 3-1 Brann (agg 5-2): Women’s Champions League quarter-final, second leg – as it happened

Patricia Guijarro (2nd-R) celebrates with teammates after scoring her team's third goal.
Barcelona overcome a stubborn Brann side to make it through to the semi-finals of the Champions League. Photograph: Pau Barrena/AFP/Getty Images

Chelsea will face Barcelona in their Women’s Champions League semi-final after the Spanish side secured a 3-1 second-leg last-eight victory over Brann to win 5-2 on aggregate.

Thank you for joining me for this match, the final quarter-final has just begin between PSG and Hacken. PSG are leading 2-1 and so it is all to play for. The round-up from Barcelona’s win and the current match will be posted here. We will be back with WCL live coverage next month with the semi-finals. Our next women’s football live will come this weekend with Conti Cup final and WSL coverage.


An impressive feat:

Chelsea will head to Barcelona for the first leg on 20 April with Barca travelling to Stamford Bridge for the second a week later – a reverse of the layout last year. Will that have an impact on the outcome? Chelsea will be hoping so. But the Blues do have an extensive injury list which includes Sam Kerr.


Chelsea will do well to study Brann’s defence, Barca had 25 attempts in this leg and 34 in the first but they only scored five of them.

Barcelona have only concede 13 goals across all competitions this season and two of those belong to Brann, a heroic performance. They will remember the goals they scored against the defending champions and the 2-2 draw against Lyon in the group stage.

Barcelona to play Chelsea in semis

There will be a replay of last year’s semi-final as Barcelona will play Chelsea over two legs for a spot in the final. Barca will be favourites to win as Chelsea have never beaten them before.

Full time! Barcelona 3-1 Brann (5-2 on agg)

Defending champions Barcelona are through to the semi-finals but this two-leg tie wasn’t the breeze the scoreline suggests. Brann were dogged and spirited opponents who made this tie entertaining. Their fans were with them until the end in their first WCL quarter-final. The future is very bright for Martin Ho’s side.

90 + 1 min: There will be three minutes added.

90 min: The build-up was great and it only required a tap home from Guijarro, she fist pumps that one. I think Brann have proved a harder opponent than they had anticipated.

GOAL! Barcelona 3-1 Brann (Guijarro, 89' - 5-2 on agg)

That was a tap home.


88 min: Rolfo does really well to muscle Brann off the ball and clear the danger, since coming back from injury Rolfo has played as though she hasn’t been away.

86 min: After that frantic 10 or so minutes Barcelona seem to have calmed themselves and set their game management. The tempo has slowed and Barca have more possession.

84 min: Paralluelo comes forward but her cross is cleared, it comes to Guijarro but her shot is over the bar. Barca make another change with Caldentey off for Vilamala.

83 min: Kvamme pops it in and Coll hits the deck when she collects, running down the clock as Brann start to take this by the scruff of the neck. It has been said this week a team with nothing to lose are the most dangerous.

82 min: Brann make a great break through Aahjem who takes the shot herself but it just wide. Wow, I actually gasp when she took the shot. Brann look stronger over the last 10 minutes.

80 min: Bonmati’s footwork is outstanding, she nutmegs a player to keep a Barca attack flowing. A few passes later Rolfo is spoken to by the referee after being a little feisty.

78 min: A long ball comes in but Coll is there to collect, if that went in this tie would be alive. Brann keep coming but eventually Barca clear, such good play from the visitors.

76 min: By the sound of the Brann fans you would think they had just scored the winner, they are absolutely loving the goal. Barcelona come forward now and Rolfo’s attempt smacks the post, my word that was so close.

74 min: Barcelona and Brann have rung in the changes, check the graphic to the side of the blog to keep up with those as they all came so fast I couldn’t type fast enough. What I do know if Paralluelo is on and is almost scoring immediately.

72 min: You wouldn’t believe it but my feed froze just as Brann scored but on the replay, what an absolute belter! Svendheim is fed the ball and manages to score from the tightest of angles. Brann fans are back to full voice, they most definitely deserve that goal for all their hard work.

GOAL! Barcelona 2-1 Brann (Svendheim, 71' -4-2 on agg)



70 min: Putellas takes the corner, they go short and it takes a long time to get it in but it comes and Paredes is whiskers away from scoring. Mikalsen plays it out after the chance and Brann give it away but Caldentey’s shot is over the bar.

68 min: What a save from Mikalsen, she has been seriously impressive over these two legs. Bonmati finds Brugts but her effort is pushed wide for a corner.

68 min: Engen and Walsh do well to clear on the edge of the box and Barcelona counter through the good work. Graham Hansen makes a good run but her effort is straight at Mikalsen.

66 min: Rolfo pops it in the area but Mikalsen collects.

64 min: Paredes gets a yellow card for a foul on Haugland and Brann have a free kick. They take it but they have to build from deep. Gaupset does well to keep possession and then win a throw in. It comes in but Kielland is dispossessed, that is her last play of the evening as she is replaced by Aahjem/

62 min: The way Brann’s domestic season works it means we already know the club finished fourth, meaning they will not have Champions League football next season. Hopefully they can qualify in their new season because they have been exciting to watch. Stenevik gets a yellow for a tackle.

60 min: Brann are still pressing here as Gaupset pops it in but Barca clear. The thing is Brann have played exceptionally well over these two legs but Barcelona are just so good they find a way to win.

58 min: Graham Hansen had a shot, Stenevik blocked but it rolled toward goal, Mikalsen saved but couldn’t control and Rolfo tapped home. Brann need a miracle now.

GOAL! Barcelona 2-0 Brann (Rolfo, 57' - 4-1 on agg)

It was a good save but Rolfo eventually converts.


56 min: After the early pressure from Brann in this second half the game has now slotted back to how it was in the first, Barcelona possession with plenty of chances.

54 min: Bonmati is expertly dispossessed by Kvamme in the box but it falls to Graham Hansen, her shot is off target.

52 min: Rolfo plays it back to Coll but it doesn’t have a lot of power in it and Crummer almost pounces, the keeper doing just enough.

50 min: Brann continue to press and the ball is popped in but Coll comes away with it, a really bright start to this half by the visitors.

48 min: Barcelona have scored 151 goals across all competitions this season (!). That just shows how well Brann have defended across these two legs so far.


47 min: Haugland with an error early on as her pass is straight out of play. Brann do have the first chance of the half though with Eikeland in the box but her chance is blocked.

Back underway! Barcelona 1-0 Brann (3-1 on agg)

So can Barcelona close this out? Or will Brann cause an upset? 45 minutes and potentially extra time and penalties to come. Brann were out first with Barcelona keeping their opposition waiting. Brann have also made a change with Engesvik off for Eikeland.

Have a read of our free weekly women’s football newsletter while we wait for the second half:

Here is that stunning Barca goal, neutrals may want Brann to win but there is no denying Barca’s brilliance:

Half-time! Barcelona 1-0 Brann (3-1 on agg)

Well defending champions Barcelona are in firm control of this tie thanks to a goal from Bonmati. Brann are playing well though and a fight back is expected in the second half.

45 + 1 min: Caldentey is in the box but Stenevik does well to block her. Caldentey wants a penalty but VAR says no.

45 + 1 min: There will be one minute added.

44 min: Rolfo to Putellas to Caldentey to out of play for a goal kick. Barcelona edging closer to a second in this second leg and just think they can still call upon Paralluelo from the bench. Graham Hansen has a lovely pass to Bronze who feeds it back to the Norway international, Graham Hansen runs straight into Mikalsen – the keeper okay to continue here but the Brann fans were not happy. A reminder that VAR is in operation here so anything untoward and it will be picked up.

42 min: It is one thing keeping yourself in a tie and it is another winning it. Brann need to be the next to score here, if not and you feel the tie is out of reach for them. So tricky as well as Brann are playing so well, they just can’t puncture the Barca defence.

40 min: You know when people ask who you’d want to narrate your life? I want Brann fans to support my life, these die hard fans are making the atmosphere so far.

38 min: Brann fans boos as play stops for Engen, who is down injured, but just as the visitors start to create a chance. Engen is soon back to her feet and okay to continue. Barca win the ball and it comes to Graham Hansen, whose shot is saved by Mikalesen – Brann fans jumping and chanting at that save.


36 min: Crummer puts pressure on Coll, who is forced to run it out and eventually deals with it well.

Gordon has emailed and said: “A great finish by Bonmati, for the Barcelona goal, but the chest pass on the turn by Putellas was exceptional.”

I completely agree, pure class from two Ballon d’Or winners.

34 min: Graham Hansen is brought down on the edge of the box by Haugland and Barcelona have a great free kick position. Putellas is over the ball but her effort is over the bar, she gets some jeers from the Brann fans.

32 min: Barcelona continue to push here, they aren’t content with their two-goal cushion.

30 min: Kielland pushes Putellas as the Barcelona captain doesn’t give up the ball. Brann come forward through Kvamme but Rolfo wins the ball back.

28 min: That goal means Brann need to score two unanswered goals just to send this tie to extra time. Their mole hill just became a mountain but the Brann fans are making their voices heard.

27 min: No they can’t. The delivery is poor, it’s hit back into the area but Kielland’s attempt is over the bar.

25 min: Bonmati picks up the ball on the turn, she contols with two touches and she fires home. Pure footballing skill. Brann now win a corner, can they hit back immediately?

GOAL! Barcelona 1-0 Brann (Bonmati, 24' - 3-1 on agg)

I’m speechless


24 min: Graham Hansen was given the ball in the area and she had acres of space but she took two touches too many and then is crowded out. Another chance comes in, this time from Bronze but it is cleared.

22 min: Gaupset is threaded the ball from Kielland but the shot is weak and Coll collects. Brann do need to capitalise on the chances they do get as they are far and few between.

20 min: Barca continue to put pressure on Brann but the defensive line is still holding strong, the question will be if they can keep it up for the entire match while also creating their own attacking chance.

18 min: Putellas has a lovely cross in, it’s cleared but it comes to Bonmati whose shot is deflected wide – another corner. It’s a good delivery and Paredes heads but it is initially cleared. Barca come again and it' meets Paredes’ head and Mikalsen is an absolute hero once again! Corner again, it’s defended well this time.

16 min: Oh my word, Barcelona are good aren’t they? They slickly get into the box but this time the effort is just over the bar from Caldentey – an opener in this second leg feels like it is coming.

14 min: Mikalsen makes a huge save, the keeper made countless in the first leg and she is stepping up again. Graham Hansen made a great run but Mikaelsen got a hand to it to send it out for a corner. It comes in but the keeper collects.

12 min: Gaupset does so well to get around two defenders but she is eventually muscled off the ball. Possession exchanges hands but play is stopped by the referee who gives Barca a free kick, they take it quickly and have patient build-up with Graham Hansen taking a shot but Mikalsen collects.

10 min: Paredes this time puts it in but it is just over the head of Brugts, all the early pressure coming from the hosts.

9 min: Cracking feet from Graham Hansen sees her dance her way into the box but her cross misses her teammates. Oh my word! Graham Hansen puts in a beautiful ball and it beats Mikalsen but also evades another Barcelona player so the chance is gone.

8 min: Brann counter and Kvamme pings the ball in and Gaupset gets a head to it, her attempt just wide. From the first leg we know all Brann need is one chance and everything will change.

6 min: Brugts wins yet another corner and Graham Hansen takes it this time, it’s headed away by Kvamme for – you guessed it – another corner. Graham Hansen is over the ball once again, they take it short and Bonmati eventually gets it into the box. It is well defended by Brann.

5 min: Putellas pops it in and Brann clear well. Every time Graham Hansen gets on the ball the travelling Brann support boo her, a great atmosphere in Barcelona.


4 min: The delivery looked good initially and seemed to be going all the way in but it is over the bar. Brann look to play out from the back but they immediately concede another corner.

3 min: Walsh finds Graham Hansen with a beautiful ball. She pops it into the box and tries to find Brugts but it is blocked out for a corner. Putellas takes the corner, she opts for the corner of the box and it comes to Brugts but her attempt is out for another corner.

2 min: Early on both teams are finding their feet, I’m expecting a tight game tonight but I bet Barcelona prove me wrong now I have said that.

Kick-off! Barcelona 0-0 Brann (2-1 on agg)

Here we go then! Can Brann cause a huge upset? Or will defending champions Barcelona cruise through? All to come.

Does anyone else absolutely love the Champions League anthem? I turn up my TV every time it comes on. Kick-off imminent.

The players are almost out in Barcelona and the weather looks stunning, perfect for a cracking match of football.

I’d love to hear from you. Yesterday we were talking biggest fails after I bruised my coccyx at a rollerdisco so I thought it would only be fair to speak today about biggest achievements. Let me know yours via X (@rendellx) or be email.

Last week’s goalscorer and Brann captain Cecilie Kvamme added: “Right now this is a match we are really looking forward to, especially because of the result we got last week which means that there is still life in the tie. We go in with the goal of winning. You always do that when you play.

Brann boss Martin Ho said: “We have a good chance to progress, because we feel that we had opportunities in the first match where we could have done better with the ball. We have to make sure we are relentless when we get the chance.”

Jonatan Giráldez, Barcelona’s manager, said: “We have scored plenty of goals and if we are able to produce a similar outcome, we would have a great chance of going through. Brann are are brave and aggressive in defence. It will be similar to the first leg.

“For me the key is consistency. There is very few teams in the world capable of being this consistent.”

The Guardian’s Suzy Wrack is reporting exclusively that Leicester City manager Willie Kirk has been fired over his alleged relationship with a player at the club. Read more here:

Chelsea played the second leg of their quarter-final last night against Ajax. That game ended 1-1 but with Chelsea winning the first leg 3-0 it was Emma Hayes’ side who came out on top:

The team news is in. Barcelona have benched Salma Paralluelo, who scored the winner in the first leg.


Brann, meanwhile, do have star Signe Gaupset despite her going off earlier than expected in the first leg.



Hello and welcome back to the Women’s Champions League. This evening we will find out who will face Chelsea in the semi-finals as the winner of this quarter-final tie have been drawn against the Blues.

The first leg saw Brann play really well, they conceded early after Caroline Graham Hansen scored but they levelled though Cecilie Kvamme. The Norwegian team, in the quarters for the first time, defended really well and it took some skill from Salma Paralluelo to get the result for the defending champions.

Barcelona only hold a slim 2-1 lead but it will be a tricky task for Brann to beat the Spanish team at home. They need to at least win the game in 90 minute 1-0 to send it to extra time.

The team news will be out shortly so stay tuned before kick-off at 5.45pm GMT.


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