Hibernian Ladies put on a brave display this evening in their UEFA Women’s Champions League encounter with FC Bayern Munich, however the Germans proved too strong for the girls in green.
Stefanie van der Gragt, Nera Berge Holstad, Vivianne Miedema, Melanie Behringer and a brace from Melanie Leupolz, saw Bayern run out comfortable 6-0 winners in front of over 2,500 supporters at Easter Road.
Hibernian goalkeeper Jenna Fife made a string of fine saves throughout whilst Nicole Rolser missed a late penalty kick for the visitors.
Bayern started the match menacingly and put Hibernian under pressure early on with former Glasgow City winger Lisa Evans testing Fife with a fantastic delivery from the right.
The Germans looked impressive and they went ahead after only five minutes when van der Gragt headed in from a Verena Faisst corner kick.
Moments later they had another opportunity when Gina Lewandowski’s cross from the right was looped towards goal by the head of Miedema and Fife reacted well to save.
There were not many moments of respite for the Hibernian defence, however the Easter Road girls did have a promising counter-attack in the 16th minute with Abi Harrison just failing to connect with Rachel McLauchlan’s cross.
Bayern’s van der Gragt was proving to be a potent weapon in the visitors’ arsenal from set pieces. The powerful defender went close to doubling her side’s advantage, first heading just over from another Faisst corner kick before moments later heading the ball against the crossbar from close range.
An uncharacteristic mistake from Fife gifted Miedema clear sight of goal only for Joelle Murray to brilliantly read the danger and clear the net-bound shot off the line.
Hibernian’s best chance of the night came not long after when Lizzie Arnot’s long-range strike forced Tinja-Rikka Korpela into her first and only save of the evening.
Bayern extended their advantage in the 26th minute when Holstad collected a through before firing it high into the roof of the net and ten minutes later Leupolz headed in number three from close range.
The second half followed a similar pattern with the Hibernian girls doing well against a superior opponent.
Bayern’s fourth goal arrived in the 57th minute when Evans burst into the Hibernian box on the right and her low driven cross was turned in by Miedema.
It was proving to be a harsh footballing lesson for the home side with Leupolz netting her second of the evening and Behringer slotting away a spot kick soon after.
The clinical Germans were not finished there and it took fantastic saves from Fife to deny substitutes Anna Gerhardt and Rolser.
On 81 minutes a push from Hibernian substitute Emma Brownlie gave Bayern their second penalty kick of the evening only for Rolser to strike the crossbar.
In time added on Rolser was sent clean through on goal however Fife stood tall to save.
Hibernian Ladies: Fife, Williamson (Brownlie 81’), Hunter, Robertson, Arnot, Smith, McLauchlan, Graham, Murray, Cornet (Small 68’), Harrison (Ewens 68’). Substitutes not used: Jeffries, Michie, Heron, Notley.
FC Bayern Munich: Korpela, Lewandowski, van der Gragt, Behringer, Leupolz, Miedema (Rolser 64’), Holstad, Evans, Faisst (Gerhardt 64’), Schnaderbeck, Dabritz (Falknor 75’). Substitutes not used: Zinsberger, Abbe, Wenniger, Maier.
Referee: Esther Staubli (SUI).
Reported by Richard Payne Picture: Hibernina FC