Women’s Champions League round-up: Chelsea put five past Benfica as Man City come from behind to beat Goteborg
Chelsea produced a sensational display of attacking football to beat Benfica 5-0 in the first leg of their round of 32 Champions League tie in Portugal.
Emma Hayes’ side came flying out of the traps and were in front after just 80 seconds when Pernille Harder used her pace down the left and pulled the ball back for Fran Kirby to tap home from six yards.
Millie Bright then made it two shortly before the half hour mark when she climbed highest to head home Guro Reiten’s free-kick from close range.
And Reiten was the provider again just three minutes later when her delivery was met by Kirby, who thrashed home her second.
Harder then got in on the act shortly before half-time as yet another Reiten cross was met this time by the head of Harder.
Nine minutes into the second half it was five when the ball ricocheted through to Bethany England and she swept past the helpless Carolina Vilao.
Things then went from bad to worse for Benfica 14 minutes from time when Christy Ucheibe was sent off for a second yellow card after a rash challenge on substitute Erin Cuthbert.
The Women’s Super League champions will take a five goal lead back to Kingsmeadow for the second leg in seven days time.
Meanwhile, Manchester City had to come from behind to beat Goteborg in Sweden as they secured a slender advantage for the return leg next week.
It was the worst possible start for Gareth Taylor’s side when Vilde Boa Risa found the net after just three minutes to give the hosts an unlikely lead.
As the half went on the visitors began to find their feet in the game and drew level when Georgia Stanway’s strike from the edge of the box found its way in off the post.
City dominated after the break as they pressed for a winner, with Sam Mewis setting up Janine Beckie with a wonderful through ball, only for the Canadian’s effort to sail narrowly wide.
But City finally found the crucial goal in the 76th minute when World Cup winner Mewis leapt to head beyond Jennifer Falk and give the English side a precious lead ahead of the second leg next Wednesday.
Elsewhere, European champions Lyon showed incredible resilience to battle back from 2-1 down and beat Juventus 3-2 in Italy.
Lina Hurtig gave the home side a 16th minute lead, but Wendie Renard leveled things up from the penalty spot.
Juventus then went back in front seven minutes later when Kadeisha Buchanan turned the ball into her own net.
And it stayed that way until midway through the second half before Melvine Malard pulled Lyon all square once more.
Then, with the first leg looking destined for a draw, Saki Kumagai popped up two minutes from the end of normal time to snatch victory for the French champions.
Lyon are looking to secure a record-extending sixth Champions League in a row this season.
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