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Arsenal 2-0 Bayern Munich (2-1 agg): Gunners shoot into semi-finals
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Mark Mann-Bryans
Press Association
Arsenal booked their place in the Champions League semis in front of a bumper crowd at the Emirates
Arsenal booked their place in the Champions League semis in front of a bumper crowd at the Emirates

Arsenal reached the Women's Champions League semi-finals after a dominating opening 45 minutes helped overturn a first-leg deficit and see off Bayern Munich 2-1 on aggregate. 

Trailing to a Lea Schuller goal, the hosts recovered from the early loss of captain Kim Little to win 2-0 in front of 21,307 fans at the Emirates. 

A Frida Maanum strike set them on their way before Stina Blackstenius' header settled the tie. 

The victory would have been more comfortable but for a fine goalkeeping display from Maria-Luisa Grohs and some wayward finishing from Arsenal. 

After watching Jonas Eidevall guide the Gunners to their first Champions League semi-final since 2013 when they lost to Wolfsburg, who also knocked them out in the quarter-finals last season, former England defender Gilly Flaherty was full of praise. 

Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live, she said: "Eidevall is confident Arsenal can beat anybody. If they get the game plan right, they're confident of beating anyone. 

"Tonight they were unbelievable, they thoroughly deserved the win. 

"They won't fear whoever they get next. I feel they believe they can go the whole way."

Little was tripped as she looked to maraud into the Bayern half with their defence out of position in the 10th minute. 

No free-kick was given but the Arsenal skipper had to be replaced by Lotte Wubben-Moy as birthday girl Leah Williamson took both the armband and Little's place in the heart of midfield.

The positional shift would play a part in Arsenal breaking the deadlock as Williamson directed a flick into the path of Maanum, who bent home the opener. 

Maanum was in again soon after but could not nick the ball off the toe of Grohs as she looked to intercept a weak back-pass. 

Arsenal's lead was doubled before the half-hour as Katie McCabe worked space for a cross from the left and Blackstenius nodded in.

Stina Blackstenius heads home the decisive goal on a memorable night
Stina Blackstenius heads home the decisive goal on a memorable night

It could have got even better before the break but Williamson missed with a header and Blackstenius was denied by Grohs before Maanum's follow-up was blocked. 

Grohs was keeping the visitors alive, saving a close-range header from Blackstenius before Wubben-Moy's cross cannoned back off the crossbar. 

The second half started on a more even keel. 

Bayern wrestled back some possession as two corners caused problems in the Arsenal box and Wubben-Moy blocked to keep out a Klara Buhl strike. 

Grohs was at it again moments later, tipping a McCabe shot wide after the Republic of Ireland international had danced into the box. 

When Grohs was not in the position to keep Arsenal at bay, it was more profligate finishing that failed to kill off the tie as Caitlin Foord ballooned a chance over the crossbar.

McCabe limped off late on to present Eidevall with another injury concern but he will be pleased his Continental Cup winners have at least two more games to add to their packed fixture schedule.

Barca cruise through

Earlier in the night, Barcelone hammered Roma 5-1 at the Camp Nou to advance to the last four 6-1 on aggregate. 

Two-goal Fridolina Rolfo scored either side of Maria Leon's curler to put Barca, who finished runners-up to Lyon last season, out of sight before half-time. 

Asisat Oshoala tapped in a fourth a minute after the restart and Patricia Guijarro headed home from a corner to complete the rout. 

Champions League debutants Roma pulled one back through Annamaria Serturini but it was plain sailing for Barca in their quest for a second European crown.


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