Day 2 of Matchday 3: FC Barcelona and Arsenal's dominance - Lyon wins over Bayern Munich
Wednesday evening brought 4 more matches in the group stage of the Champions League. FC Barcelona played a dominant game in Group C, beating Hoffenheim 4-0. Arsenal defeated the Danish Koge 5: 1 away. In the match of the day, Lyon defeated Bayern with a late goal from Henry.
In group C the game between FC Barcelona and Hoffenheim was the most interesting. The Catalans defend the Champions League title from last year and so far prove that they are still a very strong team. The pride of Catalonia can also count on the advantage of its own field, Estadi Johan Cruyff is a real fortress, where no one has won with Blaugrana this season. In the previous games, Barcelona defeated Koge, while Hoffenheim had to fall prey to Arsenal losing 4-0 in London. On Wednesday evening, the locals were the favorites to win. The players from Barcelona entered the duel with Hoffenheim without their star, Caroline Graham Hansen, however, the absence of the winger did not significantly affect the team's play. The Blaugranas did not intend to wait long and in the fifth minute, they opened the scoring. Lieke Martens crossed the free-kick, and Jennifer Hermoso headed the ball into the goal. The Catalans put a lot of pressure on visitors and in the 18th minute, they scored the second thanks to Alexia Putellas. The captain of FC Barcelona scored a great free-kick. Hoffenheim's soccer players were helpless against the rushing Spanish champions. In the 34th minute, a terrible mistake was made by the goalkeeper when Martina Tufeković seemed to have the ball under control, but it rolled between her legs and into the net. The Catalans fully dominated the opponents in the first half with 72% of ball possession, with as many as 17 shots. In this version, Hoffenheim never threatened the goal guarded by Sandra Panos. The second 45 minutes was also marked by the advantage of the champions. Barcelona could have increased the lead to 4-0 at the beginning of the second half, but Aitana Bonmati's shot hit the post. In the following minutes, Barcelona pushed, but Tufeković had some excellent saves between the posts. In the 74th minute, however, the goalkeeper Hoffenheim had nothing to say about Marta Torrejon's precise header. There were no more goals in this game as FC Barcelona confidently defeated Hoffenheim 4-0 and lead Group C.
In the second group C game, Arsenal players went to Denmark against Koge. The Londoners, like Barcelona, are undefeated in their domestic league and they played the role of the favorites in this duel. Jonas Eidevall's troops have so far accumulated 3 points, the same as Hoffenheim. From the beginning, the initiative belonged to visitors, Koge players focused on defense, and they managed to successfully implement their tactical setup for the first quarter of an hour. In the fifteenth minute, Arsenal was awarded a penalty after a foul on Nikita Parris, as Arsenal faced a chance to take the lead. Koge stopped the penalty. This clearly got the momentum going for the home team, which with even greater enthusiasm attacked the opponents' goal. The current leaders of the English FA WSL, however, had a problem with breaking the defensive ranks of the Danish team, which could count on the good disposition of their goalkeeper, Kaylan Marckese. It didn't work out of the game, so the visitors tried a set-piece. In the 27th minute of the game, Arsenal's left-back Steph Catley scored a free-kick. The Australian hit from outside the penalty area, and the ball bounced off the crossbar and hit the net. Despite the clear advantage, Arsenal were leading with just one goal difference. After returning to the pitch in the second half, the Gunners continued their efforts, and patience paid off in the 62nd minute. Nikita Parris scored giving a two-goal cushion. Caitlin Foord scored the next. However, the players of coach Jonas Eidevall experienced a moment of distraction, and the players of Koge took advantage of this. In the 70th minute, Madalyn Pokorny made use of an individual mistake from Catley, scoring a consolation goal for the Danish team. At the very end, Arsenal delivered two more blows, first in the 85th minute Foord from the left-wing crossed the ball to Anna Pattern to score the 4th, and in the last minute of the game, the result was 5: 1 for the visitors from London scored by Jordan Nobbs.
The clash between the German champion and the French champion was the pick of the lost from this matchday. Olympique Lyonnais have taken up Bayern Munich. Even before the international break, the team from Bavaria had to swallow the bitterness of defeat, letting Eintracht Frankfurt beat them. This weekend, Munich improved their moods by defeating SGS Essen. Olympique Lyonnais in the French league is doing flawlessly so far, seven matches, seven wins, but ahead of the last season's champions PSG. Therefore, two serious tests awaited the charges of coach Sonia Bompastor, although Bayern had a small slip-up, only tied with Benfica Lisbon, the German champions remain one of the strongest teams in the tournament. The first quarter of an hour at the Groupama Arena in Lyon belonged to the locals who dictated the play and looked for an opportunity to open the scoring. The French runners-up players did not give the ball back to Bayern, who for a long time was unable to leave their own half of the field. The dominance in possession of the ball was for nothing because, despite the sluggish start, the team from Munich took the lead. In the 25th minute, Caro Simon crossed from the right and Carina Wenninger directed the ball into the net. In the following minutes, the game smoothed out a bit, but also tightened up. Bayern wanted to increase the lead, while Lyon wanted to compensate for the losses at all costs. The action moved from one penalty area to another, but the goals of both teams were equal to the task. The result did not change until the break and the visitors came to the changing rooms in better moods. The second edition started brilliantly for the locals, the players from Sonia Bompastor's coach needed five minutes to bring them even. This was done by Janice Cayman, who reacted most consciously in the penalty area, ran to the deflected ball, and scored the goal. In the following minutes, the main referee had to reach for the whistle more and more often and control the temper of the players of both teams. Both the teams wanted to tip the tide of victory to their advantage. It was achieved by the Lyon players in the 86th minute when Catarina Macario's cross from a corner landed on the head of Amadine Henry. The home team's midfielder jumped the highest and directed the ball into the Bayern Munich net. The visitors did not manage to turn the game over and finally had to recognize the superiority of their rivals. Lyon with a complete series of victories takes the lead of Group D.
The second clash was between Benfica and BK Hacken. The footballers from Lisbon have one spot on their account after a sensational draw with Bayern, while BK Hacken is still waiting for the first point in this edition of the Women's Champions League. The meeting in the Portuguese capital did not bring many emotions. The fans watched an even match in which only one goal was scored. In the 76th minute, BK Hacken's winger Elin Rubensson turned a penalty kick into a goal, thus deciding that the full set of points went to the Swedish Gothenburg. BK Hacken's victory allowed the Swedes to jump above Benfica in the table.
Results of the 3rd round of the Champions League group stage:
FC Barcelona - Hoffenheim 4: 0 (3: 0)
Koge - Arsenal 1: 5 (0: 1)
Benfica - BK Hacken 0: 1 (0: 0)
Olympique Lyonnais - Bayern Munich 2: 1 (0: 1)