Chelsea Women's Champions League journey came to an end on Sunday as their 1-1 draw with a star-studded Lyon Feminines side was not enough to overcome the 2-1 defeat from the first leg.
Lyon began the game on top and they took the lead after 15 minutes as Eugenie Le Sommer found herself loose in the box, and her tame effort deflected off Maren Mjelde and trickled over the line. However, Chelsea were not prepared to lie down and Ji So-yun's exquisite free-kick gave them a much-needed equaliser after 34 minutes, ensuring an exciting second half of action.
The Blues continued to push forward after the break, and Karen Carney saw a stunning effort cannon back of the post shortly before the hour mark. They threw everything at Lyon, creating a handful of good chances to find another equaliser, but their efforts were unrewarded as the French side hung on for a draw to give them a 3-2 aggregate victory.
Check out our breakdown of the game below.
Key Talking Point
Chelsea had worked incredibly hard to reach this stage of the competition. Emma Hayes' side are desperate to prove they can compete with the best, and there are few sterner tests than Lyon.
The Blues knew they needed to go out and take the game to the French side, and that is exactly what they did. They did not lie down for their successful opponents, bursting forward and creating plenty of great chances to try and win the game.
Big ups to Chelsea women for bringing the fight tho.— Kẹ̀hindé Wiley 🇳🇬 (@ThisIsKennys) April 28, 2019
after chelsea narrow defeat v the top womens team in the world chelsea can have nothing to fear. onwards and upwards. well played.— graham fuller (@gpfmuppet) April 28, 2019
Ultimately, they did not have enough to overcome the odds, even though they were the better side for large parts of the game. Few sides have scared Lyon quite like Chelsea, and they should hold their heads up high after a spirited showing.
Starting XI: Berger (6), Bright (7), Mjelde (6), Eriksson (6), Andersson (6); Ingle (7), Carney (7), Ji (8*), Cuthbert (6), Kirby (7); Bachmann (6).
Substitutes: Blundell (7), England (6), Spence (6).
STAR WOMAN - Ji So-yung
As one of the top talents in the game, Chelsea needed Ji to step up and try help them overcome the odds, and the South Korean did not disappoint.
Ji was great on the ball, picking it up deep before running at Lyon's defence. Her trickery and skills were often on show, and she regularly looked to be the most likely source of goals for the Blues.
Even without possession, Ji's energy was vital, as she often led the charge to press Lyon's back line. She did all she could, including netting an excellent free-kick, but the Blues came up just short.
Key Talking Point
For Lyon, their reign of dominance is on track to continue for at least one more year. Having won the last three Champions League titles, many thought they would waltz through to yet another final and, despite Chelsea's best efforts, they have the chance to retain their title - again.
Having dropped points just twice in league football all season, the Champions League was always the main goal for Lyon. They have won the treble in two of the last three seasons, and remain on track to add another to their stunning trophy cabinet.
STAR WOMAN - Dzsenifer Marozsan
With so many of the world's top players at their disposal, it takes a special calibre of player to stand out for Lyon, and forward Dzsenifer Marozsan managed to do so against Chelsea.
With Ballon d'Or winner Ada Hegerberg struggling, Marozsan has to step up and guide her side to victory, and she regularly looked like wreaking havoc against Chelsea, especially as the Blues pushed higher in search of a late equaliser.
Her dribbling and agility was on show throughout the game, asking question after question of Chelsea's defence, and now Marozsan will have another opportunity to showcase her skills on the biggest stage.