By Yara El Shaboury
With the quarter-finals of the Women’s Champions League nearing completion, the best teams remaining in the competition are ready to battle it out for the most prestigious trophy in the game.
Ranking favorites to go all the way in any competition can be tough, but it’s particularly tough work with the caliber of squad left in the 2022/23 edition.
Olympique Lyonnais are the defending champions, they are knocking out Barcelona in the 2022 final and both are hoping to once again have a chance to go all the way. Here you are 90min favorites to pick up the trophy when all is said and done.
6. Paris Saint-Germain
It has been a season of almost for Paris Saint-Germain this season. They are just below the top of the Division 1 women’s table, one point behind Olympique Lyonnais. They missed out on top of their UWCL group, their losses to Chelsea dropping them to second place. They also lost 1-0 to Lyon in the Trophee des Championnes at the start of the season.
Now, they’re following Wolfsburg ahead of the quarter-final second leg: can they overturn the deficit? Will be difficult.
Arsenal have not been the most consistent side this season, with Jonas Eidevall’s side having gone through major ups and downs.
In the last few years, Arsenalalong with other English clubs, they were unable to overcome the UWCL round of 16 hurdle, but the spirit shown in beating Bayern Munich 2-1 on aggregate shows the determination and fighting spirit of the current squad.
Leah Williamson said after the match “we’re ready” – Arsenal will need to be if they are to repeat their 2007 success.
Chelsea they will look like they have a lot to prove after a disappointing exit from the group stage last season.
Emma Hayes’ side are doing well at home, although they dropped to third place in the WSL after a 2-0 defeat by Manchester City left them one point off first place with a game in hand.
Things have been going well in Europe so far, with five UWCL group wins and a 1-1 draw against Real Madrid. But the pain of the 2021 final, in which they conceded four goals in 36 minutes, is certainly still a sore subject in the Chelsea dressing room, and they’ll want to right that wrong as soon as possible.
3. VfL Wolfsburg
VfL Wolfsburg can never be excluded from the Women’s Champions League and have been particularly dominant in all competitions this year.
They are a team stacked up in every area of the pitch, with many of their players impressing for Germany last summer at the European Championship, making it to the final at Wembley. All eyes on her will be on Lena Oberdorf, who has the ability to disrupt opponents’ play and advance her team with great speed and skill.
Wolfsburg last won the Women’s Champions League in 2014 and fans are confident they can get back to winning ways in Europe’s biggest competition.
2. Olimpique Lyon
Olympique Lyonnais is the queen of the Women’s Champions League, there’s no doubt about that. The team has won eight CL titles, including a record five consecutive titles from 2016 to 2020.
Last year he won an eighth title against a high-flying Barcelona side, upsetting them 3-1 in the final. A few competitive words were exchanged before the highly anticipated match, with Ada Hegerberg saying: “There was women’s football before Barcelona, and it had been played here for years.”
They haven’t been at their best this season, but just when doubts about this team start to creep in, they always seem to rise from the ashes and prove their rightful place at the top.
Doubters will have to be proven wrong once again after the quarter-final first leg defeat by Chelsea.
Barcelona are once again the team to beat, after overcoming Roma in the quarter-finals and attempting to avenge last season’s surprise defeat to Lyon in the final.
They may not have Alexia Putellas at their disposal, but they’ve done just fine without her. The Catalans have won all but one of their games they’ve played this season (Bayern Munich in the UWCL group stage), and scored a ridiculous amount of goals.
On current form, it would be foolish to look beyond Barcelona as they are clearly hungry to reach heights yet to be reached in women’s football.
This article was originally posted on 90min.com as Favorites to win the Women’s Champions League – ranked.