SWPL: Rangers break Hearts to return to the summit, Glasgow City in seventh heaven
A fine performance from Scotland international Lauren Davidson ensured Glasgow City’s 100% start to the campaign continued with a 7-0 win over newly promoted Dundee United – though a 2-0 win over Hearts mean it is Rangers who head into the weekend top of the pile.
A brace each from new signing Emily Whelan and the returning Priscila Chinchilla were added to by a Davidson double and a first City goal for youngster Niamh Noble as Eileen Gleeson’s side put on a clinical display.
Gleeson handed new signings Whelan and Turkish midfielder Dilan Bora their first starts, while Scottish Women’s player of the year Chinchilla started her first league of the campaign after missing the opening games against Spartans and Motherwell due to a niggle.
And it was Irish international Whelan who would repay the faith first, hitting a quick fire double for City to put her side two goals up within the first 20 minutes.
Chinchilla would then bag her first of the season with a close range finish, before she stuck a goal of the season contender with a 25-yard thunderbolt which left the Tangerine net shaking and the tireless Davidson would tap home a fifth on the stroke of half time.
There was to be no rest for the Dundee United defender is the second period though, as goalkeeper Fiona McNicol was given her marching orders for a professional foul on Whelan, who had rounded the stopper just outside of the box.
The resulting free-kick was blasted home from 25-yard by Davidson for her second of the evening, with substitute goalkeeper Ellie Mitchell’s first job to pick the ball out of the back of the net.
Mitchell would respond with an excellent penalty save shortly afterwards to deny 20-year-old Davidson a well deserved hat-trick, however, there was nothing she could do to prevent Scotland youth international Noble nodding home a superb cross from the aforementioned winger in the closing stages.
However, despite City’s big win, it is reigning champions Rangers who will go into this weekend’s fixtures in top spot after a hard-fought 2-0 win over a new look Hearts side at Auchenhowie.
An even first half saw Eva Olid’s outfit almost take the lead twice, firstly through Rebecca McAllister, who saw her goal-bound effort cleared off the line superbly by Hannah Davidson before Georgia Timms was unlucky to see her excellent effort cannon of both the bar and the post.
Top scorer Lizzie Arnot would also see a long range drive clip the top of the Hearts crossbar before the half time whistle blew.
Rangers would take control from the off in the second half, with impressive youngster Emma Watson pulling the strings in the centre of the park – and it didn’t take long for the Gers to open the scoring.
A superb ball from Kirsty Maclean would release Kirsty Howat in the area, who tucked home in typical fashion to grant the home side the lead on the hour mark.
Despite some late pressure from the visitors, Scotland midfielder Sam Kerr would ensure all three points for the table toppers when she headed home on the line following a pinpoint cross from Arnot.
The win leaves Rangers, Celtic and Glasgow City all on maximum points, with each side yet to concede a goal.