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Bayern Munich defeat Real Sociedad 3-1 to qualify for the UEFA Women’s Champions League

To the group stages we go!

Bayern München v Real Sociedad - UEFA Women´s Champions League Second Qualifying Round Second Leg Photo by Roland Krivec/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

Bayern Munich enjoyed a 3-1 victory over Real Sociedad in the second leg of their qualification for the UEFA Women's Champions League group stage. Over two legs, the Bavarians secured a 4-1 advantage. The match was streamed on the FC Bayern Frauen YouTube channel, so you can catch the full replay there.

Some quick observations from a promising display from the Frauen! Highlights here.

The Dallmann - Lohmann show

Linda Dallmann added yet another goal to her tally this season and opened the scoring as well in the 18th minute— charging into the box on a quick one-two played with Sydney Lohmann and smashing home from her left foot.

The understanding between the Bayern attack was largely excellent. Dallman's driven cross four minutes later was poised to find striker Lea Schüller for the tap-in, but a defender took it first and claimed an own goal.

Sydney Lohmann, meanwhile, got in on the scoring late in the first half — a clever twist-turn on receiving the ball at the edge of the box to pull away from her markers. This time Schüller was there for the tap-in, and Lohmann's incisive cross squeezed just past two defenders to reach the Bayern striker for the 3-0.

Second half control

Credit will have to go to Real Sociedad for never letting up, even in the closing phases of the game when the result had been all but decided. But while they showed danger — and actually snatched a goal back at the very end of the first half — they never got into it again in a second half Bayern controlled without scoring.

Even in their most dangerous moments — a counter after a free kick in the 56th minute comes to mind — Bayern managed to flood just enough bodies back in the nick of time to mitigate the threat.

Manchester City transfer Georgia Stanway has been a remarkable presence in midfield and already a key player. She steadied play, pulled the strings, and drew plenty of fouls to further rob the opponents of any momentum they might have hoped to muster.

The goal conceded was Bayern’s first in competitive fixtures this season, and Maria Luisa Grohs will be disappointed to miss out on her clean sheet.

Hello, Emelyne Laurent!

It was a couple of nice showings off the bench — including 17-year-old attacker Franziska Kett's Champions League debut, even if she wasn't quite on the same page as fellow substitute Jovana Damnjanović in her best chance of the game.

Emelyne Laurent really announced herself in the final quarter of the game, dashing forward with electric pace to receive the ball in a one-on-one situation with the keeper. She looked odds on to score, and it took a really outstanding save to deny Bayern their fourth goal of the night.

Is the back three dead?

Alexander Straus shifted the formation to a back four today after a trial with his preferred back three at various points in the season. That transition doesn’t seem to have gone so smoothly, and after a convincing performance, it certainly looks like going ahead the Plan B might become the Plan A.

The good news is that Straus and the team both show a willingness to play either, and if they can develop both looks to have in their arsenal, it should help them navigate the gamut of opponents they’ll have to face all the better.

Champions League secured!

With this win, Bayern are confirmed for the Champions League again! Last season’s bitter exit will still be fresh in the players’ minds. Do this team have what it takes to count themselves as Europe’s best by season’s end? The early signs are promising, both in process and results — but we know the bigger tests are still yet to come.

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