SCOTLAND midfielder Jo Love scored three goals in just 15 first-half minutes as Glasgow City crushed Croatian champions Osijek in Holland last night.
It was an unexpectedly decisive outcome as City needed a late goal to win when the sides met at the same Champions League qualifying stage 12 months ago.
City wasted no time going about their business and Love had already seriously tested Ivana Vrodljak in the Osijek goal before she put her side ahead in the 20th minute. Her earlier effort had been turned round for a corner, but this time the experienced internationalist scored via a post.
Sarah Crilly made it two four minutes later with a great lob over Vrdoljak and the procession continued when Sue Lappin headed home to make it 3-0 after only 27 minutes.
It got worse for the Croatians when Love scored her second just after the half-hour and she completed her hat-trick after 35 minutes with a powerful shot from outside the box into the top corner.
Mateja Andrilic nearly pulled one back when she hit the post and Lee Alexander made a good save at the start of the second period, tipping Maja Joscak’s shot against the bar.
Love was taken off at half time to rest her for the next two matches, but her replacement Lisa Robertson kept up the good work, scoring City’s sixth, and they grabbed a seventh when Leanne Ross scored from the penalty spot.
The other match in the group resulted in a 6-0 win for FC Twente over Maltese champions Birkirkara.