How to watch UEFA Women’s Champions League final: Barcelona v Lyon start time, live stream, storylines, news
The Women’s Champions League final kicks off on May 21 as FC Barcelona and Olympique Lyonnais face off in a bid to win the coveted European title. The clubs are two of Europe’s most iconic brands, as Barcelona aim to lift their second straight Champions League trophy, and Lyon seek to reclaim glory as they battle for an eighth UWCL title.
Let’s take a look at three things to know before the big game
- Date: May 21
- Weather: 1 p.m. ET
- Place: Juventus Stadium — Turin, Italy
- Flow: DAZN, YouTube
USWNT players will play a role
Two names familiar to USWNT fans in the final will be Catarina Macario and Lindsey Horan as two national team players who currently play in France with Lyon. Macario signed a multi-year contract with the French Division 1 club in 2021 straight out of Stanford University. Horan joined the club more recently, signing a multi-year contract until 2025.
Macario is enjoying an incredible UWCL campaign for Lyon and leads the team in goals scored with seven out of 10 appearances. His ability to play deeper when Ada Hegerberg is up front has allowed Lyon to move the ball decisively down the pitch if needed, and the addition of Horan added more options for the French side in the middle third. Horan’s ability to win duels in midfield could disrupt Barcelona’s movement and create more attacking opportunities for Lyon.
A budding rivalry
Lyon hold the best UWCL record against Barcelona and have won all three previous games against Barcelona in the Round of 16 of the UWCL competition.
The two teams have met before in the 2019 UWCL final in Budapest, where Lyon won their fifth consecutive UWCL title. Hegerberg had a hat trick for 16 minutes after Dzenifer Marozsan opened the scoring. The four beaten goals gave Lyon a massive lead in the opening 30 minutes of the final.
Last year, the seven-time Champions League winners were knocked out in the quarter-final against Paris Saint-Germain, ending their five-year reign in a row. Barcelona beat PSG in the semi-finals and faced Chelsea in the final, winning their first-ever UWCL title by beating the Blues 4-0.
Barcelona defender Irene Paredes has experience in the French division having spent time with PSG, but believes this second clash against Lyon will serve as a bigger test for Barcelona. After navigating an early injury, she is preparing for the challenge against Lyon.
“I’m perfect now,” Paredes said. “It’s been hard to recover, and to come back to play at a high level, but it’s been quite a few weeks now that I’ve been [feeling] perfect so I’m ready to play the final.”
This is the second UWCL final appearance for Paredes, who reached the final in 2017 against Lyon with PSG where the Paris side were eliminated on penalties. Now back in Barcelona, her familiarity with the French foe is an asset to Barcelona, and she believes the final will feature the two best clubs in Europe.
“It’s unbelievable for a lot of fans, but reaching a final is really, really difficult. In my career, it’s my second time. The rest of the teammates, they’ve already won one [and] they want another. This situation must therefore be given the importance it [holds] because we are among the best clubs in Europe. But it’s always very difficult to reach a final, so I’m really excited to play it on Saturday, and of course I hope the best for our team.”
Alexia Putellas vs. Ada Hegerberg
Alexua Putellas and Hegerberg will both be massive players for their respective clubs as the two Ballon D’Or winners go head-to-head on Europe’s biggest stage. Although Putellas and Barcelona have been the team that has dominated the football headlines for the past two years, Hegerberg has long been one of Europe’s standout players.
Barcelona’s remarkable run has only extended this year, winning all 30 games in the Spanish division, while conceding just 11 goals this year and scoring 159 goals against their opponents.
Putellas, the 2021 Ballon D’Or winner and 2021 FIFA Best Player, hopes to lead them to complete a perfect season with their second consecutive UWCL trophy. The Spain international is Barcelona’s top scorer this season with 32 goals, eclipsing her career high of 26 last season. Sge led Barcelona to victory in last season’s final, converting a penalty and providing an assist against Chelsea. Putellas is joint-top scorer in the competition this season with ten goals, tied with Wolfsburg’s Tabea Wassmuth.
The 2020-21 UEFA Player of the Year is aiming to become the first player to reach 11 in a campaign at this tournament since Hegerberg did so for Lyon with 15 in 2017-18.
Hegerberg has just completed a 21-month absence with a torn ACL and returned to the pitch playing the final 12 minutes of Lyon’s 3-0 win over BK Hacken in the Champions League in March. She also recently announced her return to the international scene with the Norway women’s national team. She had refused to play for Norway until working conditions for the women’s team were improved.
Hegerberg is the UEFA Women’s Champions League all-time leading scorer with 58 goals and has scored 17 in her last 14 competitive appearances. She has scored five times in previous Champions League finals, fewer than Marta (six) and Conny Pohlers (eight).
The 26-year-old scored four of Lyon’s seven goals against Barcelona and is top scorer in the budding rivalry between the two teams.