Match Report by Campbell Finlayson and photo courtesy of Ben Kearney.
Motherwell secured their place in the Quarter-Finals of the SSE Scottish Women’s Cup after an impressive victory against Inverness Caledonian Thistle at Ravenscraig. Goals from Abby Callaghan, Katie Rice, Kerry Montgomery and a Chelsea McEachran double saw the SWPL 1 side run out 5-0 winners over their opponents from the Highlands.
Inverness started well and had the first chance of the game on four minutes, but Leanne Calder dragged her shot wide. Soon after at the other end, Caley failed to clear a free-kick, allowing Georgie Rafferty to get a shot away but it was held by Kim Jappy at the second attempt.
They were given the chance to take an early lead on eight minutes however when Chelsea McEachran was fouled in the box by Becky Dingwall, but her effort from the spot was straight at Jappy.
It wasn’t long though before the hosts did take the lead through Abby Callaghan. The ball was slipped through to the attacker and she drilled a low left foot shot into the corner.
Rafferty then had another effort for the Women of Steel but once more it was straight at Jappy in the Caley goal. The SWPL 1 side doubled their advantage on 21 minutes though with Katie Rice sending a powerful shot from distance over the head of Jappy into the net.
Inverness almost had a quickfire response when Kayleigh MacKenzie’s free kick from the left wing came crashing off the crossbar with no-one able to force the rebound home.
Motherwell were the side in control though and had a couple of shots from distance that failed to trouble the keeper. That all changed on the half hour mark however, as they moved three goals ahead. McEachran picked up the ball 25 yards from goal and sent a shot flying into the top corner.
McEachran then added a fourth when she managed to get away from Janette Janatuinen before firing a rocket into the roof of the net.
There was almost a second goal for Callaghan before the break but her shot from the edge of the area was pushed around the post by Jappy.
Well’ began the second half as they ended the first, on the front foot, with McEachran almost grabbing her hat-trick when she nodded over the bar from a corner.
Captain Kerry Montgomery came within inches of scoring the fifth goal when her looping header came off the underside of the bar before being cleared to safety while at the other end, Jodie Malcolm had a chance to break through but her touch was heavy and Rafferty stopped the attack.
The home side then hit the bar again when right back Lauren Doran-Barr got forward before her effort across goal came back off the woodwork.
They were awarded a second penalty just before the hour mark when McEachran ran onto a through ball from Georgia Crooks and was taken out by Jappy, although the foul appeared to take place outside the box. This time the spot-kick was converted, Montgomery sending the keeper the wrong way from 12 yards.
Caley almost got a goal back when Doran-Barr’s slack back pass found substitute Peigi Barker, but she couldn’t force the ball beyond Well sub keeper Morgan Hunter. The hosts then raced down the other end where Rice shot just over.
Megan McCarthy should have reduced the deficit when a free-kick found its way through to her, but she scuffed her shot and it was easily kept out by Hunter.
Kirsty MacDonald forced Jappy into another save as the Well pressed for a sixth before the hosts hit the bar for a third time, Callaghan’s strike from distance missing by inches.
The draw for the Quarter-Finals will be made on Wednesday but Inverness are back in league action next Sunday when they travel to Kelty Hearts in SWFL 1 North. Motherwell don’t play due to the international break but return to league duties in a fortnight when they welcome Stirling University to Ravenscraig.
Motherwell: Vincenti (Hunter, 46); Doran-Barr ,Rolph, Rafferty, Roberts; Adams (Otto, 75), Montgomery; Rice, Crooks (MacDonald, 66), Callaghan; McEachran
Inverness Caledonian Thistle: Jappy; Dingwall, Janatuinen, McCarthy, Scott; Malcolm, Andrews (Ross, 72), McKenzie, Bodiam; Calder, MacKenzie (Barker, 62)