Aitana Bonmatí: Barcelona ‘knew how to comeback in Eindhoven… why not now?’

The stage is set in West London, as Stamford Bridge prepares to host a scintillating UEFA Women’s Champions League semifinal meeting between Chelsea and Barcelona. Ballon d’Or winner Aitana Bonmatí addressed the press at The Bridge on the eve of the occasion, as her team look to fight back from the 0-1 deficit that was conceded last week at the Estadi Olïmpic Lluis Companys.

As the defending champions search to book their flights to Bilbao, Bonmatí spoke on the challenge that faces Barcelona as they look the overcome the deficit.

‘It’s a new challenge, we don’t find ourselves in this situation many times during the season. These are the kind of games that motivate us and make us play our best. I don’t expect anything less from this team. We knew how to comeback in the Eindhoven final in 45 minutes, why not now in 90?’

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The defeat at Estadi Olïmpic Lluis Companys marked Barcelona’s first home loss in five years. Despite the loss carrying such a title, Bonmatí assured that there is much for her side to learn from the defeat on home turf.

‘I always say that you learn about defeats; you think about what you haven’t done. There’s not time for regrets. We will analyse what we’ve done and what we’ll do tomorrow.’

The reverse fixture saw tensions rising, as Bonmatí openly expressed her dismay toward the fixture’s officiating in the second half. When asked how her team look to approach their Saturday opponents at Stamford Bridge, Bonmatí assured that ‘psychologically, we are prepared.’

Continuing, she expressed: ‘They [Chelsea] destroy more than build. In the end, it does not depend on us. The opponents prepare the matches as they see fit – it can be their strategy like in the first leg. I’d like to focus on us and what’s within our hands. We know what can happen, and it’s the job of the referees to draw the line.’

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As Barcelona look to defend their UEFA Women’s Champions League title in tomorrow evening’s meeting at Stamford Bridge, Bonmatí made their intentions clear as they prepare to face the Blues.

‘We need to try and win, we need to go out and attack, and we’ll do more of that tomorrow,’ she explained. The Spanish midfielder continued, ‘if we had won in Montjuïc, we would try and win here too – so 0-1 is not a huge result.’

FC Barcelona will face Chelsea tomorrow evening in West London in the highly anticipated second leg of the UEFA Women’s Champions League semifinal. Proceedings will be hosted at Stamford Bridge, as all heads underway at 17:30 BST.