Connect with us

Match Previews & Reports

A second group victory for Scotland Women’s U19s

After their emphatic 10-0 victory over Liechtenstein on Wednesday, Michael McArdle’s young side were full of confidence and ready to put on another show in the 21-degree heat of Tirana.

The first promising attack came from Scotland on the minute mark with a brilliant ball from Maddie Finnie, and exceptionally well read by Mason Clark who flew down the right-hand side and whipped in a cross to meet the head of Tiree Burchill. There was not enough on it this time and saved by Cyprus’ Antriana Mila. Seconds later, Burchill went down after a strong tackle with the Cyprus defender, requiring medical attention, but thankfully returning to the field of play.

The back four worked the ball beautifully from side to side, creating gaps and space for the Scottish wingers to exploit. The first corner of the game came from Scotland, just shy of five minutes. It was floated in only to meet the front post and the foot of Mya Bates, who played it into the path of Cyprus’ Elena Michail who wasted no time, driving down half the pitch, turning the Scottish midfield all ways.

A shove on Cyprus’ attacker by Mia McAuley provided Cyprus with the first free-kick of the match. The cross was easily defended by Burchill and then sent over the bar by the Cyprus player. A chance for Savvas Sofokleous’ side.

After a dominant first 20 minutes, the first goal was in Scotland’s favour, when a beautiful passage of play on the right side found the feet of Mia McAuley who whipped in a cross with her right foot to find Burchill and the back of the net.

Sitting deep, Cyprus were making the Scottish attack work hard. It would have been a second goal in quick succession from Clark had the Cyprus goalkeeper Antriana Mila not pulled off two excellent back-to-back saves!

Scotland were commanding the right-hand side of the pitch, and it took only a string of three terrific passes for Scotland to hammer home a second goal through Mia McAuley.

Even two goals behind, Cyprus continued to dig in, putting in strong tackles and defending their box. However, this resulted in Cyprus’ Ioanna Christodoulou bringing down Clark on the edge of the box, in a dangerous position. Burchill stepped up but put it wide of the post this time.

Clare Goldie took the job of captain in her stride this morning, commanding the ball and comfortably working it side to side. Similarly, Rachael Murchie dominated the midfield, weaving her way through the opposition with ease.

With two minutes added before half-time, Cyprus were desperate to put Scotland under some pressure going into the second half. Defending with everything they had left in the tank before the break, and with Constantinou continuing to put pressure on the Scottish defence, it was Scotland who went into half-time two goals up.

The second half began with Scotland dominating possession, looking for chances to punish. However, Cyprus were patient and ready to pounce on any Scottish mistake. The first real chance of the second half came in the 50th minute. Following a poor touch from Noble in the middle of the pitch, Cyprus’ Marilia Constantinou wasted no time, using her strength to steal the ball and begin an attack against the last two Scots defenders. Driving forward and into the box before a floating cross met the foot of Cyprus’ Sophia Victoria Mcbeth and unluckily into the hands of the Scottish goalkeeper Ava Easdon.

Shortly after the hour mark came the first lot of changes for both sides.

Cyprus:

Ioanna Christodoulou OFF

Ioanna Ellina ON

Kypriani Yiangou OFF

Eleonora Vasiliou ON

Estela Eleftheriou OFF

Stella Panagiotou ON

Scotland

Clare Goldie OFF

Brodie Greenwood ON

Tiree Burchill OFF

Lisa Forrest ON

Mia McAuley OFF

Jodi Mcleary ON

Finnie continued to be a force to be reckoned with at the back, collecting loose Cyprus passes and using them to the Scots’ advantage by firing them into the flanks.

The young Scottish side continued to maintain most of the possession in the second half, but credit to the Cyprus side who gave their opponents little opportunity in front of goal, holding their defensive shape very well.

Scotland will be back in action on Tuesday afternoon, as they take on group hosts Albania.

Scotland U19s

1. Ava Easdon

2. Eilidh Austin

4. Maddie Finnie

17. Niamh Noble

8. Clare Goldie

16. Mason Clark

10. Kayla Jardine

20. Mya Bates

7. Mia Mcaulay

15. Tiree Burchill

13. Rachel Murchie

Substitutions

12. Beth Rennie

3. Fallon Connolly-Jackson

5. Aimee Black

6. Brodie Greenwood

9. Lisa Forrest

11. Jodie McLeary

14. Jenna Ferguson

18. Georgia Gray

19. Eloise Morran

Features

Advertisement

More in Match Previews & Reports