Sunday, October 17, 2021

Harder fires Chelsea for the decisive Champions League victory at Juventus

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Pernille Harder’s superb form continued with the winning goal as Chelsea beat Juventus 2-1 in the Women’s Champions League.

The Danish international, who scored the stoppage-time equalizer against Wolfsburg last week when the Blues saved the draw from a 3-1 deficit, scored another important goal in Turin, giving Emma Hayes’ side three important points in the group A gave.

Erin Cuthbert had put Chelsea in front after half an hour, but it took only six minutes for Barbara Bonansea to equalize the hosts.

Harder’s goal in the middle of the second half was enough to send the Blues double headed against Servette, level on points with leaders Wolfsburg and one point ahead of third-placed Juventus.

Harder and Sam Kerr returned to the team after sitting on the bench in the weekend win against Leicester, while Melanie Leupolz and Ji So-yun were also called back.

After a quick start by the hosts, Lina Hurtig shot a shot over the crossbar early on before Bonansea headed it just over the top.

Chelsea had a lot of fun playing the ball without really threatening Juventus keeper Pauline Peyraud-Magnin, but that changed after half an hour.

Harder found Cuthbert on the right side of the room and she stabbed inward to score with a fine solo from the box.

However, the lead was short-lived. Lisa Boattin watched Bonansea run and her cross was shot home in a volley in the 36th minute.

Just before half-time there was a big slip for Juventus Turin. Peyraud-Magnin slashed her shot straight at Kerr, but her shot went just wide of the gate, the gate gaped.

Harder restored Chelsea’s lead in the 68th minute with their fifth goal of the season in all competitions.

Former Arsenal goalkeeper Peyraud-Magnin parried Kerr with a nice save shortly after as Chelsea looked for a third goal.

Juventus put some pressure on looking for an equalizer but Hayes’ side held out at the stadium where the final will be played.

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