Chelsea women have started their Champions League campaign but didn’t get off to the best of starts as defensive errors saw them almost throw away three points against Wolfsburg on matchday 1. Juventus, on the other hand, got things off to a hot start with a 3-0 win over Servette FCCF. Chelsea were desperate to come away with the three points and did just that against the reigning Italian champions with Pernille Harder once again stepping in to score a crucial goal.
Chelsea Women Eke Out Win Against Juventus On Matchday 2 of Champions League
Tense First Half
Both sides had some energy to them in this half with the Allianz Stadium providing a great backdrop to the action. Chelsea took a page from the men’s team and set up in a 3-4-3 formation in an effort to get the most out of their offensive trio and wing back Guro Reiten. This formation was a success in some aspects as Chelsea were getting forward and carving out some great opportunities but they were mostly squandered. While Chelsea made more chances it was Juventus who were making better opportunities and almost went ahead thanks to a looping header that just crept over the bar.
However, it was the Blues who went ahead with Erin Cuthbert cutting in from the wing and taking advantage of the space created by the movement of the attacking trio to get space in the box and put the ball into the net. Chelsea’s lead didn’t last long as just six minutes later Juventus equalised through Barbara Bonansea, who took advantage of the space left between the central defending trio and the wing-backs.
Pernille Harder to the Rescue
The second half was anyone’s game with Chelsea again dominating in possession but looking prone at the back when Juventus came forward. Chelsea will feel they should have pulled ahead at various points of the second half but it was Pernille Harder who rose above and came in clutch again to power the ball home after it fell to her in the box. Chelsea saw out the game somewhat comfortably with Sophie Ingles being introduced to further shore up the defence.
Following this win, Chelsea women sit on dour points in Group A, level with Wolfsburg, and will be confident of taking six points from their next two games as they take on Servette (who have lost 3-0 and 5-0 to Juventus and Wolfsburg respectively in their first two group games). Assuming she starts, Fran Kirby will be hoping to get her first goal in this Champions League campaign against such a leaky defence.