Barcelona players celebrate their victory after the UEFA Women’s Champions League match against Real Madrid on March 30, 2022 in Barcelona, Spain. Photo: IC
A world record crowd for a women’s game of 91,553 saw Barcelona qualify for the Champions League semi-finals by beating Real Madrid 5-2 at Camp Nou on Wednesday to seal an 8-3 victory in the total.
Attendance surpassed the previous record for a women’s game when 90,185 people watched the 1999 World Cup final between the United States and China at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena.
It also broke the previous attendance record for a women’s club match, set in March 2019 when 60,739 fans saw Barca beat Atletico Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano.
Meanwhile, Paris Saint-Germain needed extra time to secure a 2-2 home draw with Bayern Munich to progress 4-3 on aggregate.
Barcelona were eager to give Wednesday’s game as much exposure as possible.
The club’s 147,000 members were given 24 hours to book up to four free tickets, with only a €2.50 administration fee due. Non-members could then buy tickets between 9 and 15 euros.
The reigning European champions will advance to the semi-finals where they will face winners Arsenal and Wolfsburg.
November Women’s Ballon d’Or winner Alexia Putellas added Barcelona’s fourth after also scoring twice in the 3-1 first leg victory.
“It was magic – the game ended and nobody wanted to go home,” Putellas said.
“We were celebrating with the fans, it’s unbelievable. There were so many people, so many girls. What happened today was historic.”
It started well for Barca when, in the eighth minute, Jenni Hermoso crossed for Mapi Leon on the right and her moving cross took Misa out of position, the ball curling around the Madrid keeper and into it.
But Barca’s lead was short-lived as Olga Carmona’s headed shot caught Irene Paredes’ right elbow and Olga headed the penalty into the corner.
Madrid gained confidence as the half progressed and shortly after the break they took the lead, Claudia Zornoza scoring a stunning goal from distance. With Madrid breaking through the middle at the break, Zornoza took over, spotted Sandra Panos off his line and lobbed the keeper from all 40 yards.
Barca’s overall advantage has been reduced to one and maybe the nerves have started to set in. Instead, they scored twice within three minutes to end Madrid’s hopes.
First, Madrid were beaten with a stray ball in midfield and Hermoso played quickly against Aitana Bonmati, who had too much room to go inside and find the corner.
Then Fridolina Rolfo’s overhand pass was set up by Claudia Pina, who drifted forward and fired a shot into the far corner.
With progress assured, Barcelona started to have fun and seven minutes later Putellas made it four, his shot through Babett Peter’s legs squirming into the hands of Misa, who should have done better.
Caroline Hansen added a fifth at the far post after a rocket down the left from Rolfo. The biggest cheer of the night then came in injury time, when the big screen showed the presence.
In Paris, substitute Ramona Bachmann scored the extra-time goal that gave PSG a 4-3 aggregate win over a Bayern side missing 12 players through injury and illness.
Swiss star Bachmann moved away from his marker to score in the far corner after goalkeeper Janina Leitzig’s dive.
Sandy Baltimore had given the French the advantage in the 17th minute thanks to a clever lob.
However, Bayern equalized on the night through Saki Kumagai just two minutes later.
Klara Buehl, who also scored in the first leg, then put the German side ahead and level on aggregate in the 54th minute with a deflected shot by Lea Schueller.
PSG will face either Lyon, seven times champion, or Juventus for a place in the final.