Belfast Telegraph

Hat-trick hero Kirsty blasts Linfield to Women's Cup glory

Linfield Ladies 6 Newry City Ladies 3

By Emma Patterson

Linfield Ladies avenged the disappointment of defeat in last year's Women's League Cup final by lifting the trophy for the first time in a 6 - 3 hammering of holders Newry City at a rain-lashed Solitude.

With kick off delayed due to the treacherous conditions, it was a hat-trick from the Blues' top goalscorer Kirsty McGuinness that ultimately made the difference. She opened her account after just six minutes, converting a free kick from the edge of the box.

McGuinness capitalised on a poor defensive clearance to double her tally two minutes later, only for Newry to respond immediately with a brace from Rayza De Souza - her first a shot from 25 yards out followed by a powerful half volley.

Linfield broke the deadlock to head in with a one goal lead at half time, Amber Dempster with a clinical finish thanks to a deft assist from McGuinness.

Despite an evenly matched first half, the Blues ran riot after the break.

Dempster secured her second goal of the evening on the hour mark to put the game out of reach, her powerful strike from inside the box was fumbled by Dhebora Barbosa and drifted in.

Bolstered by their two goal advantage, the Blues had their tails up and Stephen Hatfield's outfit struggled to cope with their physicality.

McGuinness put the game beyond doubt a cushioned volley from 12 yards securing her hat-tric and substitute Alison Smyth put the icing on the cake with a 75th minute header.

Newry captain Grace Murray earned her side a consolation goal when her free kick beat keeper Lauren Perry, but it was too little too late.

Linfield: Perry, Haddock, McDade, Corry, McFrederick, McCarron, Bell (Burrows, 89 mins), Venney, McGuinness, Dempster, McVarnock (Smyth, 48 mins). Unused subs: Hutton, McCarthy, Drain

Newry: Barbosa, Murray, Campos, De Sousa, Harbinson, Da Silva, Curtis, Belem, De Souza, Taylor, Dias. Unused subs: Mackin, Waters, Domican.

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