Wolfsburg women hope for home leg 'miracle' against Barca

·2-min read
Felicitas Rauch hopes Wolfsburg can pull off a miracle against Barcelona on Saturday (AFP/LLUIS GENE) (LLUIS GENE)

Wolfsburg hope the support of a record home crowd can help inspire them to a "miracle" result against Barcelona in their Champions League semi-final, second leg on Saturday following their Camp Nou thrashing.

Wolfsburg suffered a humbling 5-1 defeat in front of a massive crowd of 91,648 - a world record in women's football - at Barcelona in the first leg.

A sell-out crowd of a more modest 20,000 is expected for the return leg at Wolfsburg, where the hosts know the odds are stacked against them.

"We want to do everything possible, especially with the fans behind us. Maybe we can pull off a miracle," Wolfsburg's Germany defender Felicitas Rauch told local paper WAZ.

Wolfsburg were behind in the first leg after just three minutes and never recovered as Barcelona strolled to a 4-0 half-time lead.

The visit of the Spanish giants means Wolfsburg are set to smash the club's crowd record of 12,464 for a women's match and home goalkeeper Almuth Schult hopes the host team puts on a show.

"We just have to get our performance right, then we'll see what happens. And miracles are always fun to watch," said Schult.

There is also an element of wounded pride in the Wolfsburg team.

"There is no giving up or giving in," said attacking midfielder Svenja Huth. "We want to show that we can do better."

That said, Barcelona are on an incredible 45-match winning streak dating back to last season.

They are overwhelming favourites to reach the women's Champions League final in Turin on May 21 against either Paris Saint-Germain or Olympique Lyon.

Wolfsburg, who are top of the women's Bundesliga table, will do well to subdue Barcelona's star player and captain Alexia Putellas, who scored twice in the first leg.

Regardless of Saturday's result, Rauch says Wolfsburg, who won consecutive women's European titles in 2013 and 2014, have already learnt plenty from facing such powerful opponents.

"If we continuously improve over the next few years, we too will once again be a team that plays for the Champions League title," she said.


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