Barcelona star Lieke Martens says first El Clasico in Women’s Champions League at Camp Nou will be ‘special’

FC Barcelona Femení are well on their way to achieving more history for the women’s professional side. The team is currently first in the Primera División after coming off an unprecedented season that featured an unbeaten record and the treble with league, cup and Women’s Champions League hardware brought back home.

Barça have yet to lose a league game — 22 wins out of 22 with a ridiculous +119 goal differential — and are currently marching toward their bid for back-to-back UWCL titles. Standing in their way is a tie next month in the quarterfinals against rivals Real Madrid, with the first leg at Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano on March 22. The second leg of the first-ever El Clasico in the Women’s Champions League will take place at a sold out Camp Nou on March 30. The match sold out in within a day, with approximately 85,000 tickets purchased by the Blaugrana faithful eager to see the first ever Champions League El Clasico between the two Spanish sides.

Barcelona recently played in Camp Nou in 2021 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first women’s match played in the landmark stadium. However, the anniversary match was played without fans in the stands due to the ongoing pandemic. 

Barça midfielder Lieke Martens has been with the club since 2017, the same year she earned The Best FIFA Women’s Player along with UEFA Women’s Player of the Year. The Netherlands international spoke with CBS Sports to discuss her role in a Barça TV+ documentary series chronicling their treble and her eagerness to have another experience in Camp Nou, but this time with fans in the stands supporting the teams. 

“It’s an amazing feeling. It’s so nice to play in front of so many people, like El Clasico here, it’s something special for women’s football,” Martens said. “I think [it’s] something unbelievable, like imagine playing in Camp Nou? It’s worldwide news I think and to be part of that is something special. So hopefully the result will be special for us too.”

The club recently announced a six-part series “Queens of the Pitch” that provides an inside look — with unreleased footage and player interviews — into the landmark treble season. Even with an offseason to reflect, the championship run still lingers for Martens as if it just transpired, and she believes it will provide different insights of a historical season for even those who were involved during various moments. 

“It’s something really special for the team, something special for the club. I mean, it’s a perfect moment to make a documentary — the first Champions League for Barcelona, hopefully more to come,” Martens said.

“To see things you weren’t part of, seeing different emotions, different things that would have been going on during the season, it’s really special in different ways, I’m really, really, excited for it.”

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