Competition Focus

FC Barcelona Femení Lose First League Match In Two Years

Spanish champions FC Barcelona Femení lost their first La Liga game in 64 matches stretching back to June 2021 away to Madrid CFF today and blew their chance of going through a second consecutive season without defeat.

Already secured as champions of their country for the fourth season in a row after winning their first 27 matches of the campaign, Barcelona have stumbled domestically since securing their place in a fourth consecutive UEFA Women’s Champions League final by overcoming Chelsea in the semi-final.

First their world record run of 62 wins in succession was ended last week away to Sevilla FC following a 1-1 draw, now they have suffered their first league defeat since losing 4-3 to Atlético de Madrid on 1 June 2021 which also came at the end of a previously perfect league campaign.

Since then, Barcelona went through the rest of that 2021/22 campaign with five more wins before winning all thirty games last season in a perfect league campaign. Most believed it was inevitable they would repeat that achievement after they steamrollered their way through their first 27 games this season but once again they have come undone after they secured the league title.

Today, two first-half goals from Racheal Kundananji were enough to to secure an unlikely victory for fifth-placed Madrid CFF. Even a first goal in a year for Ballon D’Or winner Alexia Putellas, as she continues her reintegration into the team following an anterior cruciate ligament injury, could not rescue the Catalan side.

The two goals by Zambian striker Kundananji moved her onto 25 goals for the season two goals behind Alba Redondo (27) of Levante as the leading goalscorer in the league and kept her ahead of fellow African striker, Nigerian Asisat Oshoala of Barcelona (21) who had led the scoring charts earlier in the season but went off injured in the game today.

It is the second year in a row in which the otherwise unbeatable Spanish champions have lost on May 21, after being defeated in last season’s UEFA Women’s Champions League final by Olympique Lyonnais on this date in 2022. Putellas also scored in that game, which was her last goal for the club 365 days ago.

It is also the first league defeat Barcelona have suffered under coach Jonatan Giráldez who was appointed at the start of the 2021/22 season. He won his first 57 matches in Liga F, in the process helping the club become the first professional side in history to win 50 consecutive league matches and surpassing the record of the then semi-professional Arsenal Ladies team who won 51 matches in a row between 2005 and 2008.

Barcelona have fallen short of that Arsenal team’s incredible 108 matches without defeat between 2004 and 2009. During their 64-match unbeaten run which lasted for 719 days , Barcelona scored a staggering 301 goals, an average of 4.7 a game, conceding only 23.

Barcelona can now turn their full focus onto the UEFA Champions League final against VfL Wolfsburg in Eindhoven after failing to win either of their last two away games. Wolfsburg were also surprisingly defeated last weekend, losing 4-0 to third-placed Eintracht Frankfurt but recovering to win yet another German Cup, the DFB Pokal Frauen beating SC Freiburg 4-1 in front of a record attendance of 44,808 in Cologne.

While second-placed Wolfsburg have to complete their German league campaign with a slim chance of retaining their title, Barcelona will have two whole weeks to prepare for the Champions League final as they will take no part in the Spanish Cup, the Copa de la Reina, after being disqualified earlier this year for fielding an ineligible player.

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