While You Were Asleep: Barcelona and Arsenal progress to UWCL semifinals, Cirstea topples Sabalenka at Miami Open

Barcelona Femeni mauled AS Roma at the Camp Nou 5-1 to breeze into the UEFA Women’s Champions League semifinal with a 6-1 aggregate win over the two legs.

Already one up from the away leg, Barcelona gained early lead in the home fixture, scoring via Fridolina Rolfo (2), Mapi Leon and Asisat Oshoala in the first half.

Patricia Guijarro would make it five for the home team before Annamaria Serturini pulled one back for the visitors. The win marked a fifth consecutive Champions League qualification for Barca and a 19th consecutive home win in the tournament.

Arsenal comeback against Bayern

After losing at the Allianz Arena 1-0 last week, Arsenal women marked a comeback against Bayern Munich to progress through to a first Champions League semifinal appearance (men and women) for the club since 2013.

Frida Maanum and Stina Blackstenius would find the target in the first half to remove the deficit at the Emirates Stadium on Wednesday night.

“Probably (it was the biggest win of the season), it was special when we beat Chelsea in my first game but we hadn’t worked together very long then,” said Arsenal manager Jonas Eidevall. “This feels like 20 months of work to perform here and to win deservedly against one of the best teams in Europe at the moment.”

Cirstea topples Sabalenka

Sorana Cirstea produced one of the stunning results at the 2023 Miami Open, defeating world number two Aryna Sabalenka 6-4 6-4 to progress through to the women’s singles semifinals.

The unseeded Romanian, who turns 33 next week, confirmed her second WTA 1000 semi-final appearance nearly 10 years after reaching her first.

“I started very young, by 17 I was top 100, and at 18 I finished the year I think 30-something,” she told reporters. “So I definitely started very well. If you’d have asked me back then, I would say by 30 I wouldn’t probably be playing anymore.”

Cirstea will next play either Czech 15th seed Petra Kvitova or 18th-seeded Russian Ekaterina Alexandrova in the semis.

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