Two of European soccer’s most feared dynasties are set to clash in the Women’s Champions League final this weekend.
Even though Rose Lavelle of the US Women’s National Team and OL Reign has “no idea” whether Spanish reigning champion FC Barcelona or French powerhouse Olympique Lyonnais will win the continent’s most coveted prize, she is confident that the game will be worth watching.
“Obviously, Barcelona is sick, but Lyon has some really, really good players as well,” Lavelle told Insider. “So I’m not sure. I believe it will be a fantastic game. “I’m very interested.”
Lavelle is well-versed in the players on Lyon’s side of the ball. Catarina Macario and Lindsey Horan, two of her USWNT teammates, play in the French midfield.
She’s not sure she’ll be able to watch, which makes her “actually so sad,” because Reign has a training session that clashes with the game. But if she manages to catch a glimpse of the competition, she knows who she’ll be rooting for.
A month later, Barcelona broke its own attendance record when 91,648 people packed Camp Nou for the first leg of the semifinal against Wolfsburg of Germany. Now, an estimated 35,000 fans are expected to travel to Turin for the grand finale, with tens of thousands travelling from both teams’ home markets.
“You’re going to get a good end product if you invest in women’s sports,” Lavelle said. “That’s what we’re starting to see all over the world, not just here.” It’s amazing. It’s incredible to see Barcelona sell out its stadium game after game.