Five talking points from the Women’s Champions League final

<span>Alexia Putellas (right) scored <a class="link " href="" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Barcelona;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Barcelona</a>’s second goal to clinch the Champions League title.</span><span>Photograph: Europa Press Sports/Europa Press/Getty Images</span>

Putellas’s timely reminder

Long live the queen. It took only three minutes after coming on, deep into injury time, for Alexia Putellas to seal Barcelona’s 2-0 victory against Lyon. The 30‑year‑old has played a bit‑part role since her anterior cruciate ligament injury on the eve of the 2022 European Championship but her influence still runs through the club with an unmatched intensity. Putellas’s new contract is well deserved; the roar of the crowd when she stood on the sidelines ready to come on rivalled those for the goals. Barcelona with Putellas back at her best should strike fear through every European club with Champions League ambitions.

Related: Jonatan Giráldez leaves Barcelona’s women on highest of notes | Sophie Downey

Bompastor coy over Chelsea links

Lyon’s manager, Sonia Bompastor, would not be drawn on her future after the final on Saturday. “My press officer is threatening me, I’m not going to say anything,” she said. Bompastor is expected to be confirmed as Emma Hayes’s successor at Chelsea, and the Women’s Super League champions are getting someone who is driven. “If you ask for one word [to describe] the boss Sonia, it is competitive,” the former Lyon player Kenza Dali said. “Every single drill at training was competitive with her. I was young, I was scared of her and all the time they gave out the bibs I was like: ‘Please God, not Sonia in my team.’ I was like: ‘No, if I lose the ball with Sonia, she’s going to kill me.’ Just so competitive.”

Giráldez meets his future boss

There was the most unusual of scenarios at the end of the Women’s Champions League final. The Barcelona manager, Jonatan Giráldez, walked up to collect his winner’s medal and shook the hands of the dignitaries present, with the Lyon owner, Michelle Kang, among them. Interestingly, Kang has already lured Giráldez away from Barcelona, not to Lyon but to another of her teams – Washington Spirit, who play in the National Women’s Soccer League. A multi-club ownership model is not new to men’s football, but it is novel in the women’s game. Kang comes across as a genuine individual, wanting to champion female athletes while seeing the huge potential for profitability. But whether multi-club ownership is something to be championed is a question that needs to be asked.

Lyon supporters outnumbered in Bilbao

There was something sad about the small pocket of Lyon fans engulfed by the red and blue of the Barcelona supporters who had travelled en masse for the final. Yes, it was a final in Spain and close to being a home fixture for the Catalan club as a result, but Lyon are eight‑time Champions League winners. Despite their huge success the French club have struggled to build a fanbase, and that has been starkly contrasted in their three finals against Barcelona, whose fans have embraced the women’s team and then some. Whether it is cultural, poor marketing or something else, the new ownership of Lyon has a big task on its hands in this regard. The most decorated club in European women’s football deserve supporter numbers to match and, increasingly, the impact of the fans in the stands can be felt on the pitch – a vital advantage in the closest of ties, as was seen on Saturday.

Egurrola embraces Basque homecoming

For Lyon’s Damaris Egurrola there was extra meaning to the final. The midfielder’s father is a former professional pelota player from the Basque Country and she grew up playing for youth teams in Guernica before joining Athletic Club’s academy, making 104 appearances for the senior side. “I had almost 500 people here,” she said. “I tried to bring every person who was important in my life, and they were part of it.” The football culture in Bilbao runs deep; only players from or who trained in the Basque Country can play for their teams, a policy that has been employed since 1912, and there is a huge sense of pride in this. Because of the policy, there is an extensive network of youth teams affiliated to Athletic Club and players grow up dreaming of graduating through the ranks to the first teams. Female players are less judged should they choose to leave, though, with the wages they can command elsewhere so much higher.