Barcelona became back-to-back Champions League winners in Bilbao this evening, retaining their title with a dramatic 2-0 triumph over Olympique Lyonnais.

The match was a showcase of Europe’s very best individual talent with Barcelona emerging victorious thanks to goals from Aitana Bonmati and Alexia Putellas.

After a tightly contested first half, Ballon d’Or winner Bonmati broke the deadlock on the hour mark, running through the Lyon defence after receiving the ball from Mariona Caldentey.

Up until that point the 26-year-old had been dictating the tempo from the midfield, but her breakthrough moment came when she rippled the back of the net with a deflected shot past goalkeeper Christiane Endler.

Embed from Getty Images

In a script of magic and destiny, club legend Putellas came off the bench to double the lead and secure Barcelona’s place in European history during stoppage time.

This victory marks the first time La Blaugrana have beaten Lyon in the Champions League, overcoming heartbreak from two previous final losses against them.

Manager Jonatan Giráldez told DAZN: “”It was an incredible game.

”I am really happy, it’s one of the best days of my life for sure.

“We did an amazing job and I am very proud of all of them.”

Late last year, it was announced that Giráldez would be leaving Barcelona after three years in charge at the club.

Embed from Getty Images

His next job is lined up in the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) where he will manage Washington Spirit.

He said: ”When I decided in December to leave the team at the end of the season, people criticised the decision that maybe the performance of the team are going down.

”We showed today the amazing performance we have and deserved the victory.”

It will certainly be a tough pill to swallow for Lyon, as Sonia Bompastor’s side are more than used to victory, often being labelled as titans of European women’s football.

They have beaten Barcelona before during Bompastor’s time at the helm of Les Fenottes but finished second best this evening after failing to get their grip on the game.

Embed from Getty Images

Chances came and went for the French side, but both manager and the players were dejected upon collecting their runners-up medals on the final whistle.

Lyon midfielder, Danielle van de Donk told DAZN: “I’m very emotional, nobody likes to lose a final and we were here to win it.

”It’s a shame we didn’t create enough.

”Barcelona deserved the win but I’m proud of my team, we gave it our all.”

Featured image courtesy of Валерий Дед via Wikimedia Commons. No changes were made to this image. License details found here. 

By Emilie Mwanza

Founder of Beyond The 90. Trainee multimedia journalist based in Preston.