SWPL: Glasgow City show their class in comfortable win over Rangers

By Andrew SouthwickBBC Scotland at the Excelsior Stadium
Glasgow City's Abbi Grant (second left)
Abbi Grant (second left) celebrates Glasgow City's quick-fire opener

Glasgow City capitalised on a stunning start to romp to a 5-0 win over Rangers at the Excelsior Stadium.

Abbi Grant gave them the lead within 60 seconds and by the four-minute mark Noelle Murray had made it 2-0.

Two Leanne Ross free-kicks ensured there was no way back for Rangers before a superb goal from Leanne Crichton sealed a fine win.

Rangers finished the game with 10 players after Lisa Swanson was shown a second yellow card.

City remain second in the league, with a game in hand, after leaders Hibernian won 3-0 away to Hamilton Academical.

Elsewhere, Celtic beat Aberdeen 7-0 while Stirling University edged a tight game with Spartans 1-0.

A trademark of City in recent games has been their knack for early goals, but none had been scored as quick as Grant's opener as she slotted home from inside the area while fans were still taking their seats.

Murray volleyed wide before the Irish striker got the slightest of touches to direct a Hayley Lauder cross past goalkeeper Jordan Elliot.

It was a nightmare start for Rangers but they responded well. Amy Muir fizzed a shot wide, then Swanson's curling effort was heading for the top corner before goalkeeper Lee Alexander got her fingertips to it.

That was the last time Alexander was called into any meaningful action as it was one-way traffic after that.

A sweeping City move on 28 minutes involving Murray and Brogan Hay cut the Rangers defence open, but Lauder's thumping shot was well saved by Elliot.

Two minutes later and Sam Kerr was denied by a well-timed challenge in the box from Rangers defender Claire Adams, and from the resulting corner Lauder's volley was blocked on the line.

The visitors were struggling to get out of their own half as Grant twice drilled shots wide in quick succession.

City had everything except a clinical edge. One minute into the second half and Lauder played a neat one-two but sent the ball the wrong side of the post.

Then Lauder's delightful flick gave Crichton a clear sight of goal, but she scooped her shot into Elliot's arms.

Noelle Murray of Glasgow City
Noelle Murray scored Glasgow City's second goal

Rangers could not keep City at bay and after Hay was fouled just outside the box, Ross's free-kick sailed over the goalkeeper and into the net virtue of a wicked deflection.

The points were safe but the hosts continued their pursuit of more goals. Elliot's brilliance denied Lauder from close range, as she palmed away a powerful shot, but she was beaten again by a second Ross free-kick.

Rangers' misery was compounded when Swanson was ordered off for a second booking. Carded earlier for an off-the-ball tussle with Savannah McCarthy, she then left Ross in a heap and referee Nicky Marshall felt he had no option.

City made it five in emphatic fashion when Crichton raced from deep to meet a cross, caught it perfectly in her stride and lashed it into the top corner from 25 yards.

Glasgow City head coach Scott Booth: "We were really good today, we had some really good performances. It could have easily been 10 or 12 with the amount of chances we created and the positions we were getting into. I felt we were right on it.

"If you can score early like that in a game it takes the wind out of the opposition.

"I think that's probably about the best we've played. I have felt we're coming more and more into it. A lot of it is to do with getting a bit of momentum going in the league campaign, it's been difficult to get that consistency of games, and I felt that's where the benefit came today."



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Hamilton 0-3 Hibernian

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