SWPL: Hibs back on top of the table after win at Celtic

Hibernian's Abi Harrison
Abi Harrison was again on target as Hibs beat Celtic

Hibernian went back to the top of the Scottish Women's Premier League with a 2-1 win away to Celtic.

Lia Tweedie and Abi Harrison both scored in quick succession in the second half to give the visitors a comfortable lead.

Sarah Ewens pulled one back and sparked a late onslaught, but Celtic could not find a second as their title hopes suffered a hammer blow.

Hibs lead Glasgow City by two points, though City have played a game fewer.

For Celtic, they now sit seven points behind Hibs, though have the chance to exact swift revenge and get their hands on silverware when the two sides meet again in Sunday's SWPL Cup final.

Two games in three days

It was asking a lot of both teams to produce a show just over 48 hours on from their last fixtures.

That told in a first half of few chances, though both could have taken a lead into half-time.

A great double save from Celtic goalkeeper Megan Cunningham denied Lucy Graham, standing up well to two powerful efforts from close range.

Then at the other end Ruesha Littlejohn saw her goal-bound shot blocked in a crowded penalty box.

Katey Turner screwed her shot wide from inside the area for Hibs before Suzanne Mulvey cut inside and hit the side netting as Celtic finished the half on top.

Mulvey again had an opportunity 15 minutes into the second half when she found space on the edge of the box, but Hibs goalkeeper Jenna Fife was able to push away her fierce shot, with no-one in green and white hoops able to get to the rebound quickly enough.

And, a minute later, Hibs took the lead after a mix-up in the Celtic defence.

Both Courtney Whyte and goalkeeper Cunningham went for Rachel McLaughlan's cross, smashing into into each other in the process.

The ball squirmed invitingly into the path of the grateful Tweedie who had the easy task of knocking the ball home.

It seemed to be the goal Hibs needed, and they pushed on for a second.

Siobhan Hunter headed Emma Brownlie's free-kick at the goalkeeper, but it was not long until it was 2-0.

Harrison lost her marker on the right and thumped a shot past Cunningham.

That sparked Celtic into life. Mulvey's shot somehow stayed out from a goalmouth scramble, then Littlejohn's shot deflected over.

Substitute Ewens, who scored twice from the bench on Sunday against Aberdeen, again found the net when she raced away down the right and goalkeeper Fife could not get enough on her effort.

Celtic continued to press but Hibs defended well enough to earn a confidence boosting victory ahead of Sunday.

'Horrible game'

Hibernian head coach Chris Roberts admitted it was "a horrible game" after Sunday's excursions for both sides.

However, Roberts felt both deserved great credit, his in particular for digging out the win.

"That was a really tough game, Celtic played very well," Roberts told BBC Scotland. "At 2-0 up we were comfortable and when they get the goal back it's nerve wracking, but I'm really pleased the girls managed to dig out a good win.

"We accepted we might not have as much possession as them but we were looking to play a counter-attacking game, looking to get in behind them.

"We're buzzing for the cup final, but we've got a few girls who picked up a sore one tonight so we'll try and nurse them fit for Sunday."

Top Stories