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The Guardian - UK
The Guardian - UK
Rob Smyth

PSG 0-1 Wolfsburg: Women’s Champions League quarter-final – as it happened

Dominique Janssen celebrates scoring opening goal for Wolfsburg.
Dominique Janssen celebrates scoring opening goal for Wolfsburg. Photograph: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters

“Though Wolfsburg will have home advantage, their performance today shouldn’t put the fear in PSG, who can play considerably better than today,” says Kári Tulinius . “Mind you, if Wolfsburg are as flat at home as they were today, PSG might not need to up their game, they’ll just need a bit of luck.”

Yes, I wonder whether Wolfsburg missed a trick by not pushing for a second goal when it was 11v10. I suppose the second leg will be the judge.

Full time: PSG 0-1 Wolfsburg

Peep peep! A forgettable game will be remembered for two penalties at the start of the second half. PSG’s was given and then overturned by VAR; Wolfsburg was awarded after an intervention from VAR and also led to a second yellow card for the PSG centre-back Elisa De Almeida.

Dominique Janssen scored the penalty with aplomb, and Wolfsburg held on comfortably to take a precious lead back to Germany for next week’s second leg. Thanks for your company, goodnight!


90+7 min An outstanding cross from Hamraoui on the right just evades the leaping Vangsgaard on the six-yard line.

90 min The match is petering out, if indeed it ever petered in. There will be five minutes of added time.

89 min: Wolfsburg substitution Pauline Bremer for Ewa Pajor.

88 min If it stays like this, all four first legs will have finished 1-0, three of them in favour of the away side.

87 min Groenen’s corner is poor and cleared at the near post.

86 min Popp shoots wide from distance; at the other end, Vangsgaard wins a corner for PSG.

85 min Fazer is booked for a late tackle on Popp.

84 min PSG are starting to look a bit tired, and now it’s Wolfsburg who look more likely to score. Brand turns smartly, 25 yards out, and whistles a shot that hits her own teammate Pajor.

81 min Lattwein’s clever backheeled through pass takes Pajor by surprise; she can’t control an admittedly difficult ball in the PSG area.

79 min: Wolfsburg substitution Sveindis Jane Jonsdottir replaces Lena Oberdorf.

77 min Both teams look unsure whether to stick or twist. Ordinarily this would be a dreadful result for PSG, but the sending off of De Almeida changes that. A 1-0 defeat still gives them a chance next week.

Orianne Jean-Francois is tackled by Wolfsburg's Felicitas Rauch.
Orianne Jean-Francois is tackled by Wolfsburg's Felicitas Rauch. Photograph: Franck Fife/AFP/Getty Images


76 min Brand is booked for something or other.

72 min: Wolfsburg substitution Jule Brand replaces Jill Roord.

71 min Hamraoui’s long-range shot is blocked by Oberdorf. PSG have been marginally the better team since going tdown to 10 women.

68 min Wolfsburg seem happy enough with their 1-0 lead, but they should be looking to put PSG away here. Never give a sucker an even break and all that.

You never know what will happen in the second leg. Mind you, PSG are already struggling for centre-backs and now they’ll be without the suspended Elisa De Almeida.

66 min: Double substitution for PSG Amalie Vangsgaard and Laurina Fazer replace Bachmann and Baltimore.

65 min Here’s the PSG penalty appeal that was given and then overturned.

63 min And in that moment, PSG’s latest Champions League campaign may well have gone up in flames. That handball law needs to be changed; it’s absurd. The second yellow for De Almeida feels a bit harsh, too; even if you acceept it’s a penalty according to the laws, there was nothing deliberate about it.


GOAL! PSG 0-1 Wolfsburg (Janssen 62 pen)

Dominique Janssen waits for Bouhaddi to move and passes the ball lazily into the bottom left corner. An excellent penalty.

Dominique Janssen tucks away the penalty and Wolfsburg lead PSG!
Dominique Janssen tucks away the penalty and Wolfsburg lead PSG! Photograph: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters


Karchaoui has also been booked for dissent.


Oh, football. The penalty is given, and De Almeida receives a second yellow card for the handball. It’s not remotely proportionate to the offence, but those are the rules.

I think this will be a penalty to Wolfsburg. Rebecca Welch is going to the monitor again. Oberdorf’s hit the outstreched arm of De Almeida. She was barely a yard away from Oberdorf, but the handball law is a total ass and De Almeida is in trouble.


59 min When the corner is taken, Oberdorf’s header hits De Almeida, leading to a big appeal for a penalty by the Wolfsburg players. Rebecca Welch doesn’t give it but there’s a VAR check.

58 min Three players go down off the ball while waiting for a corner, and now there’s a bit of a shoving match. Much ado about nothing.

Sakina Karchaoui clashes with the Wolfsburg players.
Sakina Karchaoui clashes with the Wolfsburg players. Photograph: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters


56 min: No penalty! There are boos from the home fans, as you’d expect, but that’s the right decision I think.

55 min: Rebecca Welsh is going to the monitor. It wasn’t the most convincing tackle from Hegerin, but she did a get a touch on the ball before making contact with Karchaoui.

Hegerin just got a touch on the ball as Karchaoui moved past her in the area, so this should be overturned.


54 min: PENALTY TO PSG! I thought it was a good challenge by Hegering on Karchaoui, but Rebecca Welch has given a penalty!

52 min The corner punched away by Frohms, and another dream dies. I’m loath to call this a bad game, not least because of the quality of the defending, but it’s definitely an unexciting one.

51 min Lawrence wins a corner for PSG, which will be taken Baltimore…

49 min Bachmann finds Groenen in a bit of space on the left side of the area, but her first touch is poor and she was offside anyway. That aside, it was one for the books.


46 min Peep peep! PSG begin the second half.

Half-time reading

Half time: Paris Saint-Germain 0-0 Wolfsburg

Let us never speak of that first half again.

45 min Here’s that Frohms save, described rather generously by the DAZN social media team.

43 min Karchaoui is fouled by Huth, then puts hands on the ball as she falls. The referee gives a free-kick to Wolfsburg for handball, which amuses Karchaoui not one jot.

40 min Lattwein’s cross is chested off by Popp towards Pajor, but Geyoro reads it well and clears. The two defences are well on top at the moment.

37 min De Almeida is booked for dissent.

33 min: Chance for Diani! Baltimore pops up on the left wing and teases a brilliant cross beyond the far post. It clears Janssen and is headed wide from close range by Diani. She may have been unsighted because of Janssen’s presence, but it was still a really good chance.

32 min: Good save by Frohms! That’s more like it. Bachmann surges into the area from the left, cuts outside Hegering and hits a low, left-footed drive from a tightish angle. Frohms, well positioned at the near post, turns it round the post.

31 min I’m struggling to think of anything to write. The last 15-20 minutes have largely been a stop-start midfield battle, with both teams commititng the necessary fouls to stop their opponent generating any attacking momentum.

Kheira Hamraoui battles for possession with Lena Lattwein.
Kheira Hamraoui battles for possession with Lena Lattwein. Photograph: Aurélien Meunier/UEFA/Getty Images


27 min Groenen is booked for a bad tackle on Huth.

26 min De Almeida makes a good interception in her own area and PSG break four on three. Bachmann takes a bit too long, however, and then pokes a poor pass towards Diani that is cut out by Popp.

25 min Huth’s inswinging corner from the left is headed over by Hegering at the near post. Again, it was a pretty difficult chance because she was running away from goal when she made contract.

There’s a VAR check for a potential Wolfsburg penalty. I’ve no idea what that was about, but the check is complete.

22 min Huth’s flat, driven free-kick is headed wide from the edge of the area by Hendrich (I think). This is all a bit disappointing.

19 min Hamraoui’s cross from the right is behind Baltimore, who tries an overhead kick but can only divert the ball away from goal. It was a pretty awkward chance.


18 min Groenen and Karchaoui combine to find Diani, whose early shot from the edge of the area is blocked. Diani, who already has a career-best 25 goals this season, looks in no mood for niceties, or assists.


14 min Wolfsburg have settled down a little after a nervous start. The last few minutes have been much cagier, in fact; there’s clearly a fair amount of mutual respect.

Alexandra Popp heads the ball under pressure from Sakina Karchaoui and Kheira Hamraoui of PSG.
Alexandra Popp heads the ball under pressure from Sakina Karchaoui and Kheira Hamraoui of PSG. Photograph: Franck Fife/AFP/Getty Images


11 min: Great defending from De Almeida! Out of nothing, Wolfsburg almost take the lead. A grisly pass from the keeper Bouhaddi goes straight to Pajor, eight yards from goal. She returns it with interest, and De Almeida stretches in front of Bouhaddi to make a vital block.

10 min The PSG fans are making a cracking noise. That’s it, that’s all I’ve got.

Paris St Germain fans.
Paris St Germain fans. Noisy. Photograph: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters


7 min Groenen moves forward and finds Karchaoui on the left. Her cross is chested down by Diani, who hits a shot on the turn that is too close to Frohms. Another good attack from PSG, though, who have started extremely well.

6 min Bachmann’s free-kick is headed well wide by Diani, running away from goal when she makes contact.

5 min Bachmann is fouled on the left wing by Hendrich. PSG have made a superb start, and Wolfsburg are struggling to get out of their half.

3 min Now Frohms has to charge from her area to beat Diani to a long ball forward.

2 min Janssen makes a vital tackle on Diani, who had evaded Hendrich (I think) in the area and was about to shoot. Diani did the first part brilliantly but was then slightly indecisive, whbich gave Janssen the chance to come across.

1 min Peep peep! Amid a lively atmosphere at the Parc des Princes, Wolfsburg get the fourth quarter-final under way.

Full time: Lyon 0-1 Chelsea

Guro Reiten’s goal gave Chelsea a terrific victory over the holders in their quarter-final first leg. Long way to go and all, but it’s a helluva result for a Chelsea team who seem to have gone up a level in Europe this season.

The winners of this tie will meet either Arsenal or Bayern Munich in the semi-final. That - like all four quarter-finals, especially the one that hasn’t kicked off yet - is finely poised.

Sophie Downey’s match preview

Wolfsburg make no secret of their ambitions. Twice champions of Europe, they are hoping to progress to the semi-finals yet again. They have the squad to do it with Alexandra Popp, Lena Oberdorf and Sveindís Jane Jónsdóttir in their armoury. The Poland forward Ewa Pajor is the competition’s top scorer with seven.

The She-Wolves will be favourites, but there have been glimmers of frailties on which PSG could capitalise. They were held to draws by Roma and Slavia Praha in their group and suffered their first domestic defeat a fortnight ago.

This will be enough to give the French side hope, especially with the firepower of Kadidiatou Diani. It is, however, hard to shake off memories of the comprehensive loss to Chelsea in December. Plus, as always seems to be the case in Paris, rumours are swirling. The latest involves the manager, Gérard Prêcheur, who has been heavily linked with the vacant national team role.

Despite the drama, PSG have it in them to pull off a result. Backed by the vociferous Parisian Ultras, the opener at Parc des Princes will be the perfect opportunity to do just that.

Lyon v Chelsea

There’s another heavyweight quarter-final taking place in France right now, which you can follow with Luke McLaughlin. I won’t give out spoilers, just in case.

Team news: Diani returns, Oberdorf fit to

PSG rested a number of players for Saturday’s Coupe de France semi-final win over Thonon Evian, including Kadidiatou Diani and the captain/emergency centre-back Grace Geyoro. They’re back tonight, obviously.

Great news for Wolfsburg: their brilliant midfielder Lena Oberdorf, who was doubtful after suffering a knee injury against Potsdam at the weekend, is fit to start.

PSG (possible 4-3-3) Bouhaddi; Lawrence, De Almeida, Geyoro, Karchaoui; Jean-Francois, Hamraoui, Bachmann; Groenen, Diani, Baltimore.
Substitutes: Picaud, Votikova, Albert, Fazer, Vangsgaard, Martens, Georgieva, Li, Traore, Elimbi, Ngueleu.

Wolfsburg (possible 4-2-3-1): Frohms; Hendrich, Hegering, Janssen, Rauch; Oberdorf, Lattwein; Huth, Roord, Popp; Pajor.
Substitutes: Weiss, Kiedrzynek, Wilms, Bremer, Demann, Wolter, Blomqvist, Jonsdottir, Wedemeyer, Wassmuth, Brand.

Referee Rebecca Welch (England).



Hello and welcome to live coverage of PSG v Wolfsburg in the Champions League quarter-final. The first game is in Paris tonight, with the second leg in Germany a week tomorrow. This is a heavyweight clash, between last year’s beaten semi-finalists. The good news is that one of them will avoid that uniquely frustrating fate this year; the bad news is that they’ll go out in the quarters instead.

After three consecutive semi-final defeats, PSG – probably the best team never to win this competition – will be desperate to reach another final. They have become the nearly side of European football, fractionally but decisively behind serial winners most of the time.

PSG keep coming back for more, though; this season they are unbeaten in Division 1 Feminine, including a win away to the champions Lyon, and have Kadidiatou Diani in unbelievable form. Yet they’re still not top of the league.

Wolfsburg are involved in an equally relentless title race, two points ahead of Bayern Munich in the Frauen-Bundesliga. Look, it’s pretty simple: when you have a quarter-final involving two teams who are serious contenders to win the whole thing, there’s a fair chance it’ll be a cracker.

Kick off 8pm GMT, 9pm in Paris.

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