Women’s Champions League Match Report: Brondby 1-1 Manchester City Women (Agg 1-2)
- City continue their historic season by reaching the quarter-finals of the Women’s Champions League
- A 2-1 aggregate win over Danish side Brondby puts City one step closer to achieving more silverware this season
City manager Nick Cushing made only one change to the side that beat Brondby in the first leg, with Nikita Parris coming in for Kosovare Asllani. Going into the game with a one goal advantage from Kiera Walsh’s stunning strike in the previous leg, City knew this wasn’t going to be an easy game away from home.
The first half ended goalless, despite great link up play between the likes of Demi Stokes and Toni Duggan on the left-hand side and a solid central midfield consisting of Walsh, Jill Scott and Isobel Christiansen. Both sides failed to create any real chances.
Brondby kicked off the second half and immediately put pressure onto the English league champions. City however were unfazed by this pressure and refused to sit back and allow the home side to take control of the game.
City were given a corner early in the second half. Toni Duggan’s cross was met by the head of Scott whose effort was cleared off the line. This chance seemed to spark an urgency from the away side, and they began to put more pressure on the Brondby defence.
When a foul by Mie Leth Jans gave away a free kick Toni Duggan’s ball into the box was poorly dealt with by the Brondby defence and the ball would fall to City’s Nikita Parris whose powerful half volley hit the post.
City would eventually find the back of the net in the 64th minute, and in some style. A throw- in by right back Lucy Bronze found Jane Ross whose assist to Duggan would produce a sensational goal.
The City forward allowed the ball to come across her body before turning and striking the ball on the half volley with her left foot. Brondby keeper Katrine Abel had no chance as the ball clipped the underside of the bar on its way into the net.
City’s away goal left Brondby needing to score three goals to keep their Champions League dreams alive, and moments after conceding the home side were level. From six yards out Nanna Christiansen quick feet and finish curled the ball into the top left hand corner of Karen Bardsley’s goal. This goal now ends City’s run of clean sheets that stood at 20 games, and is also the first time City have ever conceded in Europe.
With the 20 minutes remaining Brondby pressed for more but City managed to see out the rest of the game and book their place in the quarter-finals of the tournament in March.
These two legs against Brondby were a tough test for City but things are only going to get tougher as the competition goes into the last eight.