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Celtic knock Glasgow City Orange out of cup in 10-goal thriller

Celtic 7

M Crooks 8, 28, 58, Menzies 10, Smith 12, Wands 41, G Crooks 55

Glasgow City Orange 3

Headland 23, McMillan 29, 43,
  • Saturday, 05 September 2015
  • Glasgow Club Milton
  • 13's Girls
  • SWF Girls’ Scottish Cup

 
Simon Ritchie | YFS West Region Reporter
Articles by Author | Contact Author
 

An action-packed game with goals galore ended in Celtic advancing to the semi final of the 13s SWF Scottish Cup thanks to a 7-3 victory over Glasgow City Orange.

Mhairi Crooks helped herself to a hat-trick, and goals from Jade Menzies, Jessica Jayne Smith, Megan Wands, and Georgia Crooks ensured a comprehensive result for Celtic despite consolation goals through Chloe Headland and Sophie McMillan’s brace.

Celtic started with authority and it took a good interception from Headland to stop Mhairi Crooks’ cross finding its target in the opening minutes, but Glasgow could not keep the Hoops out for long.

It was a goal made in the Crooks household that broke the deadlock. Georgia intercepted a Glasgow passing move and showed great awareness to instantly look up and release Mhairi behind the defence. Her shot was too powerful for goalkeeper Rachel Mair who, despite getting a hand to it, was unable to stop it from hitting the top corner.

Mhairi Crooks almost grabbed her second shortly after but Mair made a sharp stop low at her near post to turn it behind for a corner. She could do nothing to stop Celtic’s second goal moments later though. A throw-in from the left wing was intelligently dummied by Smith for Menzies to hit first time, low into the bottom corner. Great teamwork from the Celtic girls.

Celtic made it 3-0 after only 12 minutes and this time it was all about individual brilliance. After her dummy set up the second, Smith took it on herself to go for goal, showing good skill down the right wing to beat her marker and then cutting inside to unleash a long-range strike that left the keeper helpless.

It was clinical finishing in the early stages that looked like putting Celtic out of sight, despite Glasgow not playing poorly at all. Even at three goals down, Glasgow kept playing neat possession football and looked to play their way out of trouble when possible. It was Celtic’s high-pressing play that was causing Glasgow problems and they could not quite create the opportunities they wanted.

When Glasgow did create it was often through Chloe Headland on the right wing. She showed great strength to hold off the Celtic defence and fired Glasgow’s first real chance of the game over the bar. Headland was involved in a good team move by Glasgow, exchanging passes with Carly Brown and Frances Hopgood before cutting the ball back to Kelsey Martin who shot wide. It was the best build-up play of the match from Glasgow and they got the goal their play deserved shortly after.

Unsurprisingly it was Headland that got it, latching onto a fantastic over the top through ball from Sophie McMillan on the left wing and neatly side-footing it past Machagla Macleod in the Celtic goal.

Confidence growing from the goal, Glasgow started to press higher up the pitch and looked more likely to get another goal when Celtic hit them on the counterattack. Chloe Warrington’s long ball from the back caught the Glasgow defence napping and Mhairi Crooks controlled it well and smashed it home.

The first-half goals were not finished there and just a minute later Glasgow got back into the match yet again when McMillan capitalised on a mixup at the back and had a simple finish to make it 4-2 at half-time.

It was an action-packed first half with both teams taking their chances, although Celtic might have been disappointed not to be out of sight considering their 3-0 lead after 12 minutes. It was credit to Glasgow that they kept fighting and forced Celtic into making mistakes at the back.

  • Half Time:
  • Celtic
  • 4-2
  • Glasgow City Orange

Glasgow started brightly in the second half, Shannon Tait’s pass found McMillan who released Hopgood on the right wing and her driven effort was saved well by Macleod. Tait played in Hopgood again but this time it was a good tackle from Eilidh Zara Milligan that prevented Glasgow closing the gap to one goal.

They did not take their chances however and Celtic got back into their stride soon after. Warrington had two shots saved by Mair and Georgia Crooks had an effort blocked by Tait before they eventually scored their fifth.

Macleod kicked the ball out to Megan Wands who, after picking the ball up in her own half, ran the full length of the pitch while the Glasgow defence stood off and fired a shot into the bottom corner to give Celtic a three-goal lead again with a great individual effort.

As was a common occurrence in the game however, it didn’t last long. Glasgow hit Celtic on the counterattack and found themselves with three attackers against one defender. Hopgood dragged the defender out wide and then played a smart ball into the middle for the unmarked McMillan who reached it just before the goalkeeper and knocked it in for 5-3.

Pegged back a goal once again, Celtic stepped it up a gear for the last 20 minutes. Warrington showed her aerial prowess twice from corners - once with a looping header at the back post that went wide and then with a powerful header from a well-timed run that went narrowly over the bar.

Georgia Crooks, who had been the pivot in the centre of midfield for most of the game for Celtic, sitting deep and allowing her teammates to push forward while she covered their positions, dropped back into defence following a substitution but rather than limit her attacking potential she suddenly popped up with the goal of the game. She picked the ball up on the left wing, cut inside and hit a curling effort of such precision it hit the inside of the stanchion. A postage-stamp finish that the keeper could do nothing about.

With five minutes left to play, Celtic continued to push for another. Good defending from Kelsey Martin prevented Warrington from grabbing it, but she could do nothing to stop Mhairi Crooks getting her hat-trick from Wands’ looping cross and finishing the match at 7-3.

It was a deserved victory for Celtic whose class eventually told over the piece - a quick start and a good second-half performance glossing over the fact they made hard work of it at some points.

For their part, Glasgow City Orange never stopped fighting and did not look out of it until the latter stages. Every time Celtic got a goal they looked hungry to get one back as soon as possible, with their best spells coming just before and just after half time. They will take encouragement from their performance but it is Celtic who are in the draw for the semi-final.

  • Full Time:
  • Celtic
  • 7-3
  • Glasgow City Orange

Lineups

Celtic
Glasgow City Orange
1. Machagla Macleod
3. Monica Docherty
4. Eilidh Zara Milligan
6. Georgia Crooks
8. Jade Menzies
9. Mhairi Crooks
10. Jessica Jayne Smith
11. Megan Wands
12. Danielle Scott
15. Chloe Warrington
2. Carly Brown
3. Shannon Tait
6. Chloe Headland
7. Kelsey Martin
8. Rachel Connell
9. Frances Hopgood
10. Sophie McMillan
11. Jayanne Gorman
18. Emily Millar
21. Rachel Mair
22. Maja Paszenda
Star Player
Celtic
Glasgow City Orange
Could have been either of the Crooks but Mhairi's hat-trick just edges it. Her finishing helped put Celtic out of sight and into the semi-final.
Chloe Headland was the bright spark in the first-half and she was pivotal in creating everything good that came from Glasgow.
Magic Moment
Celtic
Glasgow City Orange
Georgia Crooks' performance throughout was outstanding and her fantastic finish was the icing on the cake. A precise finish that looked more like that of an established centre-forward rather than someone playing at centre-back.
Sophie McMillan's lovely ball over the top took out the entire Celtic team and gave Chloe Headland the opportunity to get Glasgow back in the game which she took with aplomb.
  • Match report and photos copyright Youth Football Scotland.
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