McCabe denied as Ajax hold Arsenal to a draw

Katie McCabe of Arsenal WFC controls the ball during the UEFA Women´s Champions League Second Qualifying Round First Leg match between Arsenal and AFC Ajax at Meadow Park on September 20, 2022 in Borehamwood, United Kingdom.

Republic of Ireland captain Katie McCabe thought she had snatched a late winner for Arsenal as they took on Ajax in the UEFA Champions League qualifier on Tuesday night.

McCabe got on the end of a free kick and placed her effort into the roof of the net but was denied by the offside flag.

Jonas Eidevall’s side still have work to do to reach the group stages of the Women’s Champions League after being held to a 2-2 draw by last season’s Eredivisie Vrouwen runners-up.

The Gunners had fought back to lead in the first leg of their second-round qualifier at Meadow Park but were pegged back by a late equaliser.

Arsenal fell behind to a Romee Leuchter effort after 17 minutes at Boreham Wood but levelled with a Stina Blackstenius strike just six minutes later.

Kim Little then gave the hosts the lead from the penalty spot just before the hour but Leuchter’s second of the evening seven minutes from time kept Ajax firmly in the tie.

Substitute McCabe thought she had claimed a late winner for Arsenal but her effort was ruled out for offside.

Scottish champions Rangers will need to overturn a 3-2 deficit to advance after they were beaten by Benfica despite two goals from Kayla McCoy in a thriller at Ibrox.

Rangers, bidding to reach the group stage for the first time, were involved in an eventful encounter with McCoy heading them ahead after 25 minutes but Benfica hitting back with an Ana Vitoria double.

McCoy responded to level the scores again but the Portuguese side, who also hit the woodwork twice, won it on 79 minutes when Victoria Esson failed to keep a out a ball that took a looping deflection off Lisa Martinez. The winner was later credited to Benfica captain Pauleta.

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