Barcelona wins Women’s Champions League with stunning comeback


Midfielder Patricia Guijarro ignited a stunning second-half comeback as Barcelona overturned a 2-0 deficit to beat Wolfsburg 3-2 and win its second Women’s Champions League title on Saturday.

“We didn’t make it easy for ourselves,” Barcelona and England defender Lucy Bronze said in a pitchside interview after securing her fourth Champions League crown. She won it three years in a row with Lyon.

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Fridolina Rolfö capped the fightback by calmly firing the winner into the far corner of the net after a mix-up in the Wolfsburg defense in the 70th minute.

Guijarro is one of 15 Spanish players, including Bonmati and four other Barcelona teammates, who renounced playing for Spain last year, citing differences with their coach. They have not played since and their participation in this summer’s Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand is in serious doubt.

Wolfsburg led 2-0 at the break thanks to goals from Ewa Pajor and Alexandra Popp.

But Barcelona kept believing it could win.

“We were never worried about scoring three goals,” Bronze added.

Barcelona earned its second league crown – the first was in 2021 – from its fourth final since 2019 in front of 33,147 fans at PSV Stadium, a record crowd for a women’s game in the Netherlands.

Guijarro’s double in the 48th and 50th minutes swiftly overturned a first half in which Wolfsburg’s pressing play and clinical counterattacking earned two goals.

First, the Barcelona midfielder slammed the ball into the roof of the net in the 48th. Aitana Bonmatí then made room for herself on the right before crossing for Guijarro to head past Merle Frohms for the equalizer. Guijarro was named player of the match.

It was a remarkable turnaround for coach Jonatan Giráldez’s Barcelona Wolfsburg took the lead inside three minutes when tournament top scorer Ewa Pajor robbed Bronze of the ball close to the Barcelona penalty area and fired a powerful shot that goalkeeper Sandra Paños touched but could not stop from flying in. The goal improved Pajor’s tally in the competition to nine.

It was a rocky start for Bronze, who returned to the Barcelona lineup for the first time since she was injured in the semifinal first leg against Chelsea and underwent knee surgery.

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Irene Paredes clasped her hands to her face when she squandered a great chance to equalize 10 minutes later, heading wide at the far post a corner from the right by María Pilar León.

Wolfsburg doubled its lead when veteran forward Alexandra Popp ran into space between two defenders and headed a cross from the left by Pajor past Paños from close range in the 37th. Popp equaled Ada Hegerberg’s record of scoring in four finals.

Wolfsburg goalkeeper Merle Frohms made sure her team went into the break without conceding by racing off her line in stoppage time to smother an effort by Salma Paralluelo.

But she couldn’t stop Barcelona’s onslaught after the break.

With Barcelona leading and the minutes ticking down, Giráldez brought on two-time Ballon d’Or winner Alexia Putellas, who has recently recovered from an ACL injury. Barcelona’s vocal fans in Eindhoven roared as Putellas replaced Bonmatí.

It was Putellas who accepted the trophy from England coach Sarina Wiegman after Wolfsburg players formed a guard of honor for their opponents as they walked up to collect their medals.

Barcelona vs Real Madrid: How to watch El Clasico in Copa del Rey semi


Barcelona looks for its fourth-straight El Clasico victory over Real Madrid on Wednesday, though the Blaugranas would probably also accept the draw would push them into the Copa del Rey final against Osasuna on May 6.

Real won the first Clasico of the season on Oct. 16 at the Bernabeu, and that stands as the lone rivalry win for Carlo Ancelotti’s men this season.

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The reigning La Liga champs have are 12 points behind Barca in league play and are 1-0 down after 90 minutes of this two-legged cup semifinal.

Barca, meanwhile, beat Madrid in the Supercopa de Espana on Jan. 15, then in the first leg on March 2, and finally 2-1 at the Camp Nou in La Liga play on March 12.

The games have been tense and the league match three weeks ago was an absolute doozy. Here’s how to watch Barcelona vs Real Madrid in the last Clasico of the 2022-23 season.

How to watch Barcelona vs Real Madrid in El Clasico live, Copa del Rey stream link and start time

Kick off: 3pm ET, Wednesday (April 5)
Updates: Stats and analysis via
Online: Stream via ESPN+

Barcelona team news, injuries, lineup options

Andreas Christensen, Ousmane Dembele, Pedri, and Frenkie de Jong look set to miss out on this one, leaving Barcelona to look, perhaps, to Ansu Fati, Ferran Torres, and even younger Masia players.

Real Madrid team news, injuries, lineup options

Regular left back Ferland Mendy is still out, and that’s remains a tricky ask for Carlo Ancelotti especially against a team that can attack as viciously as Barcelona.

Barcelona vice president makes contact with Lionel Messi about return


The future of Lionel Messi has largely been linked with another season at Paris Saint-Germain or a move to Major League Soccer, but his former club is an option and no longer just lurking in the weeds.

Barcelona vice president Rafael Yuste said Friday that the club has been in contact with Messi’s camp regarding next season.

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“If we talk about La Masia academy and youth players, we are talking about Leo,” Yuste said. “He arrived here when he was 12 years old. Of course, I would love to have him back. I say it personally. But I think that many of our supporters would love that too.

“For everything he would represent if he came back. Not only talking about a sportive, economic, and social levels, among other issues.

“But also because I think that all beautiful stories must have a happy ending. And answering your question, my answer is yes. We are in contact with them (referring to Messi and his father and agent Jorge Messi).”

What’s the future of Lionel Messi: PSG, Barcelona, MLS?

Messi authored an unparalleled career at Barcelona and is widely considered the best playmaker of his generation, but had to leave the club due to financial problems in Spain.

He joined PSG in 2021 on a two-year deal and there have been plenty of reports that Les Parisiens and Messi were discussing a new short-term deal. But there have been nearly as many reports that he’s in line for a move to Inter Miami or another MLS club.

Barcelona beat Real Madrid last month to virtually assure a return to La Liga’s champions circle. Xavi’s side has only allowed nine goals in La Liga play, but it’s scoring totals are down and a Messi and Robert Lewandowski pairing remains terrifying despite their advanced age (and don’t forget Raphinha).

As for Messi, he’s far removed from his days of threatening to score 100 goals in a calendar year but he’s still the most prolific player in Ligue 1. Messi has 26 goal contributions this season including a league-best 13 assists. FotMob’s player rating system has him as far-and-away the best player this Ligue 1 season.

Does Barcelona or PSG offer him a better chance to win another European Cup, and would that even matter if the alternative provided by MLS is generationally lucrative in how it sets up his already potential-filled future.

Barcelona beats Real Madrid in wild El Clasico, goes 12 points clear


Barcelona beat Real Madrid 2-1 thanks to a late Franck Kessie winner which all but secures the La Liga title for the Catalan club.

Barca now has a 12-point advantage over Real with 12 matches left to play, and the Blaugranas won the first leg of the Copa del Rey semifinal over Real just over two weeks ago too.

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Barcelona has now won four-straight matches in all competitions and Xavi’s men have only allowed nine goals in La Liga this season, as Jules Kounde, Andreas Christensen, and teenage left back Alex Balde have been very good with Sergi Roberto scoring a beauty of an equalizer after a Ronald Araujo own goal had put Real ahead early on Sunday.

As for Real, they thought Marco Asensio had won it late on but VAR chalked his goal off for offside before Kessie became the hero.

Below are the Barcelona vs Real Madrid video highlights. 

How to watch Barcelona vs Real Madrid live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 4pm ET, Sunday
Stats: Via scoreboard on
Online: Stream via ESPN+

Then Franck Kessie popped up with a last-minute winner to send the Nou Camp wild.

Real thought they had regained the lead in the final 10 minutes but Marco Asensio’s goal was ruled out for a very slight offside by VAR.

Barcelona equalized through Sergi Roberto.


Real Madrid go 1-0 up early. Ronald Araujo with an own goal.

Barcelona team news, injuries, lineup options

OUT: Pedri (muscular)

Real Madrid team news, injuries, lineup options

OUT: David Alaba (hamstring), Ferland Mendy (muscular)

Barcelona wins first leg of Copa del Rey El Clasico semi over Real Madrid


Barcelona bounced out back from a bad week in the best way, handing El Clasico rivals Real Madrid their first home loss in nearly a year to take a 1-0 first leg advantage in the Copa del Rey semifinals.

Real had not lost at the Bernabeu since falling 3-2 to Chelsea in the Champions League quarterfinal second leg, and even that “loss” ended with Real moving onto the next round given the 3-1 win in a London-based first leg.

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Barcelona was bounced out of the UEFA Europa League by Manchester United last week and then fell to La Liga’s 15th-place side, Almeria, on Sunday. But an Eder Militao own goal prodded by one Franck Kessie was all Barca needed to take an advantage to Bernabeu on April 5.

Osasuna leads Athletic Bilbao 1-0 after a home win in their first leg.

Carlo Ancelotti saw his side dismantle Liverpool 5-2 at Anfield in the Champions League last week and they battled back to draw at home against 10-man Atletico Madrid in La Liga over the weekend. Real beat Barcelona 3-1 in the La Liga meeting between the two teams earlier this season but they currently sit seven points behind league leaders Barcelona.

Here’s everything you need for the first leg of the Copa del Rey semifinal at the Santiago Bernabeu, with the second leg taking place at the Camp Nou on Wednesday, Apr. 5.

Real Madrid vs Barcelona player ratings: Stars of the Show

Antonio Rudiger: The former Chelsea man was very, very good.

Sergio Busquets: The midfielders in this match were either classy in-form or in legendary status, but the ageless Spaniard added another fine Clasico to his resume.

Marc-Andre ter Stegen: The ballplaying goalkeeper required by Barcelona’s reputation.

Jules Kounde: Barely put a foot wrong when he had the ball, including 11 clearances.

Franck Kessie: The tie might be over if he brought his finishing boots, though it’s worth noting the own goal he forced likely is a “big chance missed.”

Real Madrid vs Barcelona player ratings

Real Madrid vs Barcelona video highlights: Franck Kessie prods Real own goal

How to watch Real Madrid vs Barcelona live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 3pm ET, Thursday (March 2)
Updates: Stats and analysis via
Online: Stream via ESPN+

Key storylines & in-form players to watch

Veteran Luka Modric continues to defy logic with his displays in midfield, while Vinicius Jr and Karim Benzema have been in fine form in attack. Fede Valverde and Eduardo Camavinga have been superb in recent weeks too. Defensively Real are short of options but Nacho has filled in admirably at full back.

Barcelona continue to chop and change their team but they will be without top scorer Robert Lewandowski through injury for this clash. Gavi and Pedri are essential to how they play under Xavi but the latter is missing, which is a big blow too. A special shoutout to goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen as Barcelona’s defense has allowed just eight goals in 23 La Liga games so far this season. Eight.

Real Madrid team news, injuries, lineup options

Ferland Mendy is still out, while David Alaba injured his hamstring against Liverpool and won’t return until early April. Rodrygo is a doubt after a hip injury.

Barcelona team news, injuries, lineup options

Xavi is without a trio of key players as Robert Lewandowski, Pedri and Ousmane Dembele are all out. Ansu Fati is also a doubt so there’s a lot of pressure on Raphinha and Ferran Torres in attack.