Wednesday, 29 June 2016
Cliftonville Ladies took on Glentoran Belfast United on Wednesday at Crumlin Leisure centre.
In a battle of second against fourth it was the Reds who started the brighter and took the lead as Nikita O'Neil took advantage of some hesitant Glentoran defending to fire into the net leaving Glens 'keeper Ashleigh McKinnon stranded.
Cliftonville looked confident and were knocking the ball around nicely and they created another opening when Leontia McVarnock was played through on goal but was stopped by a superb last ditch tackle from Jessica Foy.
However the reds did double their lead on twenty one minutes through Marissa Callaghan as she picked up the loose ball midway inside the Glentoran half before driving at the defence unleashing a powerful strike into the net clipping the post on its way in.
Cliftonville were in a fine mood and there was every reason for manager Joe Smith to smile as Gemma Quigley was the latest to carve out a chance but she dragged her shot wide of the target.
As the game approached the break Glentoran nearly pulled a goal back through Rachel Rogan as she flicked wide a teasing cross from Gail Macklin.
Cliftonville were comfortable going into the break and came out the second half hoping to put the game to bed and they nearly did exactly that when Callaghan played a sublime through ball to Celine Curtis but she could only fire wide after McKinnon in the Glentoran goal got her angles all wrong.
Glentoran though came out with much more of a swagger whatever manager Billie Clarke had said it certainly spurred them on as Lauren Wade hit a terrific cross the ball sailing over Reds keeper Tiarna McKenna's head only for Teri Moore to head it off the line stopping a certain goal.
Glentoran did however pull a goal back on fifty-five minutes as Macklin's header was knocked into the path of White and she fired in from an acute angle to give them a lifeline.
McKenna then had to be alert to keep her sides lead intact as she cleared away a threatening through ball by White looking for its intended target of Rachel Rogan but Glentorans equaliser did come as White scored her second as she poked home a Sarah Gamble cross from the right and it would be fair to say it was deserved.
Cliftonville seemed to be revitalised after this goal and they should have gone back into the lead as Joanna Dos Santos bombed down the left to cross for O'Neil but McKinnon easily saved her weak shot.
Glentoran thought they had the lead as the game started to open up as Jessica Foy made a fantastic run forward before her low cross beat McKenna but Rogan just couldn't get the slightest touch to guide the ball home.
Chelsey Edwards fired over the Glentoran bar from long range, a warning that Cliftonville were far from done.
This chance then inspired Glentoran as they went on the counter attack and Lauren Wade had a great chance but she dragged her shot wide when well placed to finish. McKenna then was to the rescue once again as she made a fantastic save when she denied White a Hat trick from a one on one situation.
It was then the turn of McKinnon to come to her sides aid as she made a superb save from a dipping long range strike by the impressive McVarnock from the resulting corner Moore thought she had Cliftonville back in front but she could only head wide.
Glentoran then had a second chance cleared of the line as Wade's jinking run saw her get into the box before pulling her cross across the face of goal only for Joanne McCarthy to clear it off the line.
With only minutes left Cliftonville thought they had nicked all three points as Celine Curtis got on the end of a Callaghan cross before her header crashed off the crossbar.
Cliftonville Ladies: McKenna, McCarthy, Moore, Moran, Martin, Quigley, Edwards, Callaghan, Curtis, O'Neill, McVarnock subs Lewsley (not used), Da Silva (replaced Martin 50), Kelly (not used)
Glentoran Belfast United: McKinnon, White, Oprey, Gamble, Foy, Bailie, Macklin, Martin, Rogan, Bryce, Wade subs Burden (not used), Murray (not used), Caskey (replaced Gamble 21)
Referee: Tony Clarke
|Joana Da Silva||50|
|Glentoran Womens FC||14||10||2||2||47||32|
|Sion Swifts Ladies||13||10||2||1||40||32|
|Derry City Ladies||14||1||1||12||-47||4|
|Comber Rec. Ladies||14||0||1||13||-93||1|