Kirsty McGuinness (14)
Amber Dempster (41)
Kirsty McGuinness (47p)
Abbie Magee (64)
Amber Dempster (86)

5

BLUES REMAIN ON COURSE FOR DOUBLE

Linfield Ladies defeated Cliftonville Ladies 5-0 to progress to the Semi Finals of the League Cup.

It was the second time Linfield had entertained Cliftonville in the space of a week after clinching the league title against the Reds last Wednesday.

The game got off to a lively start and the visitors threatened in the first minute when Kiera Moss pounced on a Nicole Adams fumble but the home goalkeeper made amends. The deadlock was broken on 14 minutes when Lauren Robson played in Kirsty McGuiness and she coolly lobbed over Tiarna McKenna to give Linfield the lead.

Moss was looking dangerous for Cliftonville and alert goalkeeping from Adams prevented Moss from making it 1-1. At the other end Amber Dempster was beginning to come into the game and shot at McKenna after a well-worked Linfield move combing McGuiness and Dempster.

On 41 minutes Linfield doubled their lead. The inform Dempster slotted home from a tight angle just inside the area. She cleverly drew McKenna off her line, dropped the shoulder and fired across goal to put Linfield in a commanding position.

The second half began with a bang as Linfield where awarded a penalty when Billie Simpson clattered Lauren Robson inside the box. Referee Luke McDonald had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Kirsty McGuinness stepped up to score her second of the night and make it 3-0 to the Blues.

Cliftonville where next to threaten on 59 minutes when substitute Rachael Cromie tested the hands of Adams in the Linfield goal with a well executed free kick. Adams had to be a full stretch to tip the effort over the bar.

A defence splitting pass set up Linfield’s next goal, a perfectly weighted ball from midfield released McGuinness down the left wing, she drove forward and unselfishly squared the ball for Abbie Magee to tap in from 6 yards. Both side where making changes after the hour and Cliftonville sub Leah McEvoy had a golden opportunity to pull a goal back for the Reds. However her effort went wide of the right post when she was well positioned inside the area.

With three minutes remaining Amber Dempster scored her second of the night with a lovely turn and shot that found the bottom left corner. A well-weighted pass from Abbie Magee from the right wing set up Dempster who had the composure to finish inside the area, with a powerful and accurate strike to seal a 5-0 victory.

Linfield progress to the League Cup Semi finals and a League and League Cup double is very much on.

Referee: Luke McClelland