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Barcelona Femeni see off HB Køge in Women’s Champions League

A tough game for the defending champions

HB Koege v FC Barcelona: Group C - UEFA Women’s Champions League Photo by Martin Rose - UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images

Barcelona Femeni made it two wins out of two in the Women’s Champions League by beating HB Køge 2-0 on Thursday but found it tough going against the Danish champions.

The visitors were without captain Alexia Putellas due to injury and had to cope with an artificial pitch for their second group match.

HB Køge had been hammered 5-0 by Hoffenheim in their opening game but started strongly and forced goalkeeper Sandra Panos into a good save in the first minute.

Another chance came and went on 15 minutes when Andrea Pereira was forced to slide in and make a last-ditch clearance to prevent Barca going 1-0 down.

Barca then finally started to get to grips with the game with Caroline Graham Hansen doing brilliantly to set up a chance for Fridolina Rolfö who could only fire over the bar.

More chances came for both sides but neither team could break the deadlock and Barca went in at the break with the game still goalless.

Coach Jonatan Giráldez clearly wasn’t happy with his team’s first-half showing and made three changes at the break, sending on Aitana Bonmati, Patricia Guijarro, and Maria Leon.

The changes saw Barca began to dominate and finally make the breakthrough just after the hour mark. Bonmati found Lieke Martens out wide to cross for Rolfo to convert at the far post.

More goals should have followed with Rolfo passing up another chance, while Graham Hansen teed up Bonmati who somehow managed to send a good chance wide of the post.

Barca had to wait until stoppage time to finally seal the win.

The visitors earned a penalty after Jenni Hermoso was clipped in the box and she made no mistake with her spot-kick to secure a hard-fought three points.

HB Koge: Marckese; Faerge, Svendsen, Guldbjerg, Obaze, Markvardsen; Pokorny (Thrane Hornemann, 89), Fitzgerald, Jankovska (Sajewich, 82), Nielsen; Carusa

Barca: Panos; Torrejon, Pereira, Fernandez (Leon, 46), Melanie (Ouahabi, 63); Vilamala (Bonmati, 46), Syrstad Engen (Guijarro, 46), Hermoso; Martens, Rolfo (Oshoala, 71), Graham Hansen.

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