Tuesday, May 21, 2024
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HomeSportLyon Chase Historic 100th Win In UEFA Women’s Champions League - Forbes

Lyon Chase Historic 100th Win In UEFA Women’s Champions League – Forbes

TURIN, ITALY, MAY 21: Olympique Lyonnais players celebrate at the end of their Women Champions … [+] League football match against Barcelona at Juventus Stadium in Turin, Italy, on May 21, 2022. Olympique Lyonnais defeated Barcelona 3-1. (Photo by Isabella Bonotto/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
On Wednesday, Olympique Lyonnais, the record eight-time winners of the UEFA Women’s Champions League and defending champions are set to reach another landmark by becoming the first team to record 100 wins in the competition.
Lyon host Swiss champions, FC Zürich Frauen at the club’s main venue, the 59,186-capacity Groupama Stadium, having already won the reverse fixture in Switzerland 3-0 just two weeks ago.
Their record so far of 99 wins in the competition is 40 higher than the next best of 59 held by former champions Wolfsburg and Arsenal. Even if Lyon were to never win another game in the UEFA Women’s Champions League, it would take those teams over three years to surpass Lyon’s mark.
The men’s Champions League has been established for 30 years now so it is no surprise that 14 teams have accumulated over 100 victories in the competition, led by Real Madrid on 281 wins from 470 games.
Olympique Lyonnais will become the first women’s team in European history to reach this landmark and are also set to claim their 100th win in the Champions League ahead of their men’s side and become the first French team of either gender to record a century of victories in the competition.
Lyon’s men have played 148 games in the Champions League and won just 65, a win percentage of 43.9. The women’s team have so far won 99 of their record 126 matches in the competition, a win percentage of 78.6.
The French side’s first win in the competition came back on August 9, 2007, a 12-0 win in a First Qualifying Round match played in the inauspicious surroundings of Strumica in Macedonia against Slovak champions Slovan Duslo Šaľa. Their first goal was scored by Camille Abily who is currently working as assistant coach to another former player and captain, the head coach Sonia Bompastor. Remarkably, two of the current side, Amandine Henry and Wendie Renard also scored in that game 15 years ago and will feature in the game this week.
Lyon went on to lose in the semi-final that year but after the competition was rebranded from the UEFA Women’s Cup to the UEFA Women’s Champions League at the turn of the decade, Lyon reached their first final in 2011 losing to German side Turbine Potsdam in a penalty shoot-out. They gained revenge defeating the same opposition 2-0 in the following year’s final to win their first title, retaining it in 2012.
Lyon’s Captain Sonia Bompastor (r) and Laura Georges (l) lift the trophy after defeating FFC Turbine … [+] Potsdam (Photo by Adam Davy – PA Images via Getty Images)
After three seasons without winning the competition, Lyon returned to the summit in 2016 defeating Wolfsburg on penalties, the first of a staggering five successive European titles. When Spanish champions FC Barcelona won their first title in 2021 and swept all before them on route to the following year’s final many believed Lyon’s hegemony had passed. Yet, the French side proved their doubters wrong in last season’s final in Turin to comprehensively defeat Barcelona 3-1 and claim an eighth title.
Unsurprisingly, their number of wins is just one of a slew of records they hold in the competition they have made their own, with eight titles in the last twelve seasons. They have played in most finals (10), semi-finals (12) and scored most goals (445). Their captain Wendie Renard made history last season as their first player to make 100 appearances in the competition. On Wednesday, she is set to appear for a record 106th time in Lyon’s record 127th game in the UEFA Women’s Champions League.
LYON, FRANCE – OCTOBER 19: Beth Mead of Arsenal celebrates after scoring their sides fifth goal … [+] during the UEFA Women’s Champions League group C match between Olympique Lyon and Arsenal at Groupama Stadium on October 19, 2022 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Valerio Pennicino – UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images)
While their 100th victory seems likely this week, Lyon’s future in this season’s competition is far from certain. They began the group phase with a startling 5-1 home defeat to English side Arsenal before surrendering a half-time lead away to Italian champions Juventus in Turin which currently leaves them third in the standings at the halfway point with only the top two qualifying for next year’s knockout stages.
The top two, Arsenal and Juventus will take points off each other when they face-off later the same evening in London. Even if Lyon gain their expected victory this week, it is almost certain they will require a 101st win over one of the top two later this month to take their defence of the trophy into the New Year.

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