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McCabe helps Arsenal to 5-1 win as holders Barcelona also triumph in Champions League

The Irish skipper was introduced as a sub in her side’s victory over Danish champions Koge.

Arsenal players celebrate a goal by Steph Catley against Koge.
Arsenal players celebrate a goal by Steph Catley against Koge.
Image: Claus Bech

IRELAND CAPTAIN Katie McCabe featured as Arsenal defeated Danish champions Koge 5-1 to put them second in their section in the inaugural group stage of the women’s Champions League.

McCabe started on the bench but was introduced in the 72nd minute for goal-scorer Steph Catley.

The English WSL leaders saw Nikita Parris have an early penalty saved but they went ahead in the 27th minute when Australia’s Catley curled in a free-kick in front of the sizeable travelling support.

Parris made it 2-0 just after the hour mark and Caitlin Foord, another Australian international, headed in the third after captain Jordan Nobbs saw her shot hit the bar.

American Maddie Pokorny pounced on a Catley mistake to pull one back for the hosts just outside Copenhagen, but substitute Anna Patten made it 4-1 and Nobbs then completed the rout.

Meanwhile, captain Alexia Putellas netted twice as Women’s Champions League holders Barcelona kept up their perfect record in this season’s competition by easing to a 4-0 win over German visitors Hoffenheim.

Jennifer Hermoso headed Barcelona into a fifth-minute lead before Putellas smashed in a left-foot free-kick from 20 metres out to make it 2-0 before the midway point in the first half.

Putellas, the UEFA women’s player of the year who is a leading contender to win the Ballon d’Or later this month, then made it 3-0 just after the half-hour mark, her shot dribbling through the legs of Hoffenheim goalkeeper Martina Tufekovic.

Marta Torrejon headed in a Putellas cross to complete the rout in the 74th minute, shortly after the floodlights briefly went out at the Johan Cruyff Stadium.

Barcelona, whose coach Jonatan Giraldez is not yet 30, maintain their 100 percent record in Group C and have 12 wins out of 12 in all competitions this season, with 64 goals scored and just three conceded.

Seven-time Champions League winners Lyon, who won the trophy five years running from 2016 to 2020, host German champions Bayern Munich later in Group D, while Benfica face Swedish champions Haecken.

On Tuesday last season’s runners-up Chelsea crushed Servette 7-0 in Switzerland to move two points clear at the top of Group A from Wolfsburg, who drew 2-2 at Juventus.

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Paris Saint-Germain beat Real Madrid 4-0 to make it three wins out of three in Group B.

PSG’s victory was overshadowed on Wednesday when one of their players, France international Aminata Diallo, was detained by police in connection with a recent vicious street assault on teammate Kheira Hamraoui.

© – AFP, 2021

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