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Chelsea Women vs Real Madrid Women. Women's Champions League Group D.

Stamford BridgeAttendance11,262.

Chelsea Women 2

  • G Reiten (62nd minute pen)
  • M Chavas (70th minute own goal)

Real Madrid Women 1

  • A Del Castillo (69th minute)

Chelsea 2-1 Real Madrid: Guro Reiten penalty and Mylene Chavas own goal send hosts into Champions League quarter-finals

Report as Chelsea qualify for the quarter-finals of the Women's Champions League with one game to spare; Guro Reiten's second-half penalty and a Mylene Chavas own goal see Emma Hayes' side through as Group D winners; Athenea had equalised for Real Madrid

Image: Chelsea are into the Women's Champions League quarter-finals

Guro Reiten's penalty and a Mylene Chavas own goal saw Chelsea beat Real Madrid 2-1 at Stamford Bridge to qualify for the Women's Champions League quarter-finals as Group D winners.

Knowing three points from their final two games would be enough to progress to the last eight, ​​​​​​Reiten's spot-kick in the 62nd minute after a foul on Niamh Charles opened the scoring for Emma Hayes' side to send them on their way.

Real substitute Athenea looked to have spoiled the party by equalising against the run of play (69), but a Chelsea victory never looked in doubt as just seconds later, Chavas turned Erin Cuthbert's cross into her own net to put the hosts back in charge (70) and they comfortably saw out the win.

Chelsea Women
Image: Guro Reiten's penalty opened the scoring for Chelsea in the 62nd minute

How Chelsea reached the quarter-finals

Chelsea's first chance fell to the left foot of Cuthbert - wearing the captain's armband with Millie Bright still absent - but her low drive hit the legs of Chavas after Fran Kirby had found her with a deft through ball.

Jess Carter drilled a searching pass to the left flank that was helped on by Charles, rampaging forward from full-back, into the path of Reiten. She hit an audacious, dipping effort that was just clawed out from underneath the crossbar.

Real threatened through Colombia international Linda Caicedo, tricking her way in behind Kadeisha Buchanan and looking to poke it beyond Hannah Hampton from a devilish angle. The goalkeeper, making her Champions League debut, instinctively threw up a strong right hand and beat the ball away.

Reiten set up Cuthbert, who swung and missed her kick with the goal gaping, before the Scotland international and stand-in captain crossed to the near post to present Mia Fishel with seemingly an easy finish, but she could only guide it wide.

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Lauren James
Image: Lauren James started on the bench for Chelsea but was brought on at the start of the second half

Hayes sent on Lauren James, fresh from her weekend hat-trick, at the break as her side searched for the goal that would seal a last-eight berth, whilst the precocious 18-year-old Caicedo, injured during the first half, was withdrawn by Real boss Alberto Toni.

Anything less than a win and qualification for Chelsea would go to the final matchday, a result likely needed away at impressive Champions League debutants Paris FC, twice conquerors of Real in this season's competition.

The goal to radically alter that equation arrived just past the hour. Melanie Leupolz's pass split Real's defence and the move ended with Charles being brought down by former Manchester City winger Hayley Raso. From the spot, Reiten put one Chelsea foot in the quarter-finals.

Chelsea Women
Image: Chelsea have qualified for the last eight as Group D winners

James looked to seal it with a goal all of her own making, cutting in from the right and standing up two defenders before racing beyond them and clipping a shot towards the near post that was brilliantly deflected away by Chavas.

Then all of a sudden, Chelsea switched off. There seemed little on for Real when the ball was pinged up to Raso, high up on the right of the box but with Charles in her path and only Athenea to aim for.

Instead she looked to do it herself, blasting low at goal, her shot beaten out by Hampton but into the path of the substitute who tapped home.

Fortune smiled on Hayes' team almost at once, their lead restored within a minute when Chavas lost concentration at the critical moment and fumbled Cuthbert's cross over her own line.

Hayes: Qualifying is minimum expectation

"We expect to go through, that's a bare minimum," said Hayes after the game. "We should expect to go through as group winners. That's already a sign of progress, that we expect those things.

"I didn't think it was a scintillating performance, I thought it was a boring game. Not every game is swashbuckling and dynamic. I thought it was flat.

"I think it was understandable. We had an amazing performance at the weekend against Manchester United. Our league is really tough and I think it showed in some of the flat play for us. But we controlled the game without maybe doing enough in the final third.

"I brought Lauren [James] on at half-time, I thought that helped. Got the penalty, concede a sloppy goal from back to front, a poor goal.

"Then a really good response to go 2-1 up, then managed the game somewhat to the end in what was an efficient performance, but it was boring."

What's next for Chelsea?

Live WSL

Chelsea head to Brighton in the Women's Super League on Saturday, live on Sky Sports. Kick-off 5.30pm.

Emma Hayes' side then visit Paris FC in their final Champions League group game on Tuesday January 30, kick-off 5.45pm.

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