Harder haunts former club Wolfsburg to save Chelsea
The Blues aim to do better than last season when they reached the final for the first time, before being beaten 4-0 in Gothenburg by Barcelona.
Chelsea beat Wolfsburg in the quarter-finals last season, but it has long looked like the Germans will get their revenge at Kingsmeadow.
Sam Kerr had given the England side the lead but the visitors turned the game around at half-time as Tabea Wassmuth and Jill Roord scored for the visitors.
Wassmuth scored again early in the second period as she rebounded from a Jessica Carter mistake.
Bethany England started Chelsea’s retaliation just three minutes later when she shot at home in a scrimmage.
But Chelsea looked doomed to defeat until Harder, who moved between clubs for a world record in 2020, calmly returned home with a few seconds to spare.
Elsewhere in Group A, Juventus got off to a good start with a 3-0 victory over Swiss club Servette.
Arianna Caruso, Lina Hurtig and Valentina Cernoia were targeting the Italian champions.
Real Madrid won their first-ever Women’s Champions League campaign in Group B as Lorena Navarro’s goal saw the Spaniards win 1-0 over Kharkiv in Ukraine.
Paris Saint-Germain are the favorites to dominate this section and were victorious 2-0 in Iceland against Breidablik thanks to goals from Lea Khelifi and Grace Geyoro.