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Central Girls progress in confident fashion

Central Girls 4

McEachran 24' 51' Ferguson 47' McIntosh 70+5'

Celtic 0

  • Saturday, 05 September 2015
  • Little Kerse
  • Under 15´s
  • SWF Scottish Cup

Jack Thomson | YFS Falkirk Senior Reporter
Author's Bio | Articles by Author | [email protected]

With kick-off approaching of the SWF Cup Quarter Final between Central Girls and Glasgow Celtic, many thought the meeting would prove to be the tie of the round. Both teams are home to a number of Scotland internationalists and have produced fine spectacles in previous encounters. 

It was to be Central Girls who claimed a place in the semi-final. Leading at the break courtesy of a rifled penalty from Chelsea McEachran, the home side dominated the second half and emerged winners at full time with a further three goals to add to the tally. Rhianne Ferguson lashed home before McEachran scored from the spot for a second time. Kirstie McIntosh rounded off a successful day’s work with a late free kick to ensure an emphatic 4-0 victory. 

The initial proceedings were somewhat cagey with both sides looking to find their bearings on the wide pitch. McIntosh and Morgan Cross were combining well in the early stages, hinting at what was to come. The first clear-cut opportunity of the tie would fall to Central in the eighth minute when McIntosh drew a foul on the edge of the area. Kim McAlpine bent the ball expertly over the wall and provoked a great reaction stop from Celtic goalkeeper Jade Baillie. 

The resulting corner was curled in deep toward the back post and fell to Ellie Kane who knocked the ball just beyond the post. The game had kickstarted into life and Central nearly opened the scoring in an almost identical scenario from another corner kick. In the 14th minute McIntosh hung the ball into the box for Cross who must have thought she had found the net with the inside of her foot but was denied by a last-ditch goal-line clearance from the Celtic defence. Central Girls were beginning to assert pressure with the impressive Cross running the channels and McIntosh controlling the midfield. 

The deadlock was broken in the 24th minute. McIntosh threaded an inch-perfect ball through for Cross, who was adjudged to have been clipped by Baillie inside the penalty area. A penalty was awarded as well as a yellow card for the Celtic goalkeeper. McEachran made no mistake drilling her penalty high into the middle of the goal. 

Celtic almost found themselves level in the 32nd minute when a lofted ball into the box found Eleanor Howard in space. Howard was unfortunate to miscontrol her effort six yards from goal. Seconds before the half-time whistle Nicola Millar’s snapshot from the right for Celtic dropped wide of the left post and meant that the score remained 1-0 at the halfway stage.

  • Half Time:
  • Central Girls
  • 1-0
  • Celtic

Celtic began the second half with better periods of possession but were successfully contained by Central and limited to successive long-range efforts. Millar did well to create space and test the home goalkeeper before Yasmin Boyce drilled a free-kick wide of the post. 

The vision of McIntosh in midfield was evident once again for Central in the 41st minute as the midfielder released McEachran with a delicate through ball but Baillie reacted sharply to narrow the angle and block. Central had the second goal they so craved in the 47th minute, however, when the ball fell to Ferguson on the edge of the box following a stramash in the penalty area. She showed no hesitation to bury the ball into the net with a fine finish. 

Minutes later, Central would put the game beyond all doubt. Cross had raced clear with just the goalkeeper to beat and in carbon-copy circumstances to the opener, was brought down by the away goalkeeper. Baillie was unfortunate after bravely closing down the forward but Cross showed pace to nip past the goalkeeper and secure a penalty. A second yellow card for the goalkeeper meant that substitute goalkeeper Kendall Welsh would be introduced into the foray at the expense of an outfield player. McEachran converted the penalty with confidence, finding the bottom left corner with the inside of her foot. Welsh guessed correctly but the finish had more than enough power and accuracy to make it 3-0. 

McEachran thought she had the match ball in the 55th minute when McAlpine curled a free kick into the box. Cross flicked the ball on into the direction of McEachran who rolled the ball into the net. The referee disallowed the goal as the striker appeared to be in an offside position. 

As the tie entered the final stages, Central Girls continued to manage the game with professionalism. Megan Gallagher and McIntosh were displaying some deft touches and good close control through the middle. It was a domineering display from the creative midfielder McIntosh and she had her reward in the closing seconds. A stoppage time free-kick was awarded on the edge of the opposition penalty area. McIntosh lined up the set-piece and dispatched her effort with aplomb into the roof of the net to complete a 4-0 victory. 

At the restart, the referee blew time on an exquisite performance from the home side who will enter the SWF semi-finals in confident form.

  • Full Time:
  • Central Girls
  • 4-0
  • Celtic

Lineups

Central Girls
Celtic
32. Cerys Gilbride
36. Chelsea McEachran
31. Claire Whitaker
23. Ellie Kane
34. Erin Harrison
28. Jade Lockie
26. Katia McKenna
22. Kim McAlpine
27. Kirstie McIntosh
24. Megan Gallagher
29. Morgan Cross
33. Orla King
30. Rhianne Ferguson
35. Shaney McCabe
25. Zoey Young
1. Jade Baillie
8. Yasmin Boyce
6. Jennifer Campbell
15. Rachel Connor
7. Kathleen McGovern
10. Taylor Hamill
4. Gabrielle Higgins
5. Victoria Kane
12. Bethany Kerr
9. Kirsten Laing
2. Carly Girasoli
11. Emma Fleming
21. Nicola Millar
17. Aisha Maughan
18. Kendall Welsh
14. Eleanor Howard
Star Player
Central Girls
Celtic
Morgan Cross - Here tireless running of the channels drew defenders out of position to create space for her teammates. Posed a constant threat going forward and did well to win two penalties.
Yasmin Boyce - She refused to give up on her team's cause until the very end, driving forward at every opportunity and leading by example as they sought a way back into the game.
Magic Moment
Central Girls
Celtic
Kirsty McIntosh's free kick in the final seconds was an excellent display of technique and confidence. Unstoppable effort from the midfielder and topped off a fine performance.
Jade Baillie produced a magnificent acrobatic save to deny a Kim McAlpine free-kick in the first half, displaying wonderful shot-stopping ability.
  • Match report and photos copyright Youth Football Scotland.
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