BY PAUL LAGAN in Paris
Maren Mjelde dream this season was to play in this season’s Champions League.
The 29-year-old Norway defender has recently returned from a six-month lay off through injury and scored the Chelsea goal in the 92nd minute of normal time to give the Blues a vital away goal and secure a 3-2 aggregate win over Paris St-Germain on Wednesday night.
Mjelde raced up the field and was on the spot when Karen Carney sent a deep cross into the PSG penalty area.
Mjelde made mo mistake and beautifully stroked the ball home.
“It felt great to score that goal,” she said.
“I did not want it to go to extra time so I was just looking for an opportunity. I saw that Kaz (Carney) had the ball so I did a run. I felt the ball was in the air a long time. I just had to hit it good. And I did – it was a great feeling.
“I knew it was going in. I hit the ball really well, it was controlled.
“I did not know when I was going to come back from my injury, that’s why I had the Champions League quarter final as my biggest goal this year – I made it back. I was dreaming about it every day in the gym, everyday in rehab sessions. This is what I’ve been thinking about – I glad it ended like this today.”
One Chelsea fan called her a legend for her effort which also included hacking the ball off the Chelsea goal line when 2-0 down.
She said: “It’s nice to be called a legend by supporters, it’s a nice compliment. I haven’t been at Chelsea a long time – two years now. And I’ve been out for six months with an injury. The Champions League was my goal and it feels good to be finally fit.”
Chelsea faced a hostile crowd but rose above it to finally silence then at the death.
“We don’t play in front of that type of crowd too often,” she said.
“And of course you have to block it out but when they scored the first goal, they got even louder. After the second, even louder still. We were strong to come back. We were struggling for much of the game.
“They’re have the support they have. Compared to them, we felt small. But you have to block it out. It’s challenging and a good experience.
“Hopefully the big crowds will develop in England. We have a good league now with many good teams. Hopefully it will be more and more popular like in other countries.”