Match Reports :-

Hibernian v Queens' Park - Premier League Cup Final - Saturday 10th. November 2007

Ladies' domination continues

Hibernian Ladies continued their dominance of Women's football in Scotland on Saturday when they claimed the first piece of silverware this season. Hibernian Ladies defeated Queen's Park in the Final of the Premier League Cup in a very one-sided final as Maggie Wilson and Shelley Kerr won their first trophies since taking over at the helm.

Despite being a newly promoted team, Queen's Park were expected to give the Edinburgh side a real run for their money in the show piece final while for Hibernian it was a chance to avenge the defeat by Edinburgh Ladies at this stage last year. That turned out to be the only time Hibs were defeated last term but it was still a memory the girls would use for motivation, if any was needed!

 The Hibernian management team elected to make just the one change from the side that defeated Glasgow City last weekend when Scotland Internationalist Pauline Hamill returned to the starting eleven. That meant Laura Kennedy dropped to the bench despite a good performance last week against City.

Hibs started the game in a confident manner and created an early chance when Pauline Hamill made a fine run into the penalty box before cutting back to the on rushing Suzanne Grant, the striker's first time shot going narrowly past the post as the Hibees chased an early goal. The first goal is always important and Hibs were piling on the pressure trying to get the early counter with Kim Little, Mandy Burns and Pauline Hamill all going close.

The goal was coming and it duly arrived after Pauline Hamill picked up the ball in the final third and played a beautiful pass through for Kim Little to run onto, the youngster made no mistake and slotted past the Queen's goalkeeper. The lead was almost doubled by Suzanne Grant soon after when she burst through the defence only to shoot wide from a good position.

Another chance was missed after a flowing move involving five players as the Queen's Park goalkeeper superbly stopped a drive from Natalie Ross. Hibs were bombarding the Queen's Park defence and grabbed a vital second goal when Kim Little picked the ball up wide left, she outran her marker and skipped past two challenges before unleashing an unstoppable shot. As the half came to an end Hibernian were completely dominant with Gemma Faye barely having to make a save.

Half Time: Hibernian Ladies 2 Queen's Park Ladies 0

Almost immediately after the restart Hibernian went close as Mandy Burns found Suzanne Grant in space, the striker taking a touch before firing towards goal but once again the Queen's goalkeeper was in fine form to keep her out but it was not long before she broke her duck. Pauline Hamill played the ball to Kim Little, the Scotland star turned her marker before playing the ball to the back post where Grant was on hand to fire the ball into the back of the net from close range.

 Queen's were trying in vain to get back into the game, and a surging run from Jenny Beattie almost gave them hope until Shelley Kerr made a thumping tackle and cleared the ball to safety. Hibs were still on the hunt for a fourth goal and it came from Kim Little, the outstanding youngster picked the ball up in her own half and drove at the Queen's Park defence, they backed off her as she continued to drive. Once she found herself in the box there was only going to be one outcome, she curled the ball low into the net to grab her hat-trick.

Queen's did have one more attack and again it was Beattie who was at the heart of it after a long ball into the box. With Shelley Kerr and Gemma Faye closing her down she hit the ball beyond the goalkeeper only for Julie Ferguson to clear the ball from the goal line and deny the Glasgow side a consolation strike.

Full Time: Hibernian Ladies 4 Queen's Park Ladies 0

Hibernian Ladies: Gemma Faye, Shelley Kerr, Julie Ferguson, Stacey Cook, Kirsty McBride, Kim Little, Mandy Burns, Natalie Ross, Joelle Murray, Pauline Hamill, Suzanne Grant. Subs: Laura Kennedy, Tracey Burns, Alison Donnelly, Frankie Brown.

With a winner's medal firmly clutched in her hand to add to the Scottish Cup and League Championship medal won last season, midfielder Julie Ferguson was ecstatic with her team's victory. She said: "We are delighted with the win; everyone has been working hard to make sure we achieve this and our performance today has just topped everything off.

"We’ve had difficult games over the past few weeks so to come out with League Cup at the end of it is very pleasing. The team has been performing well together this season and the confidence and team spirit is there for everyone to see. There is a long road ahead in terms of the league, but coming up to the winter break we are delighted with how things have went so far, we just have to keep taking it one game at a time."

Richard Payne



Queens Park go for Glory!

The first silverware of the season is for grabs on Saturday when Hibernian take on Queens Park in the League Cup Final at Forthbank Stadium, Stirling.

Hibernian are overwhelming favourites for this match, something Queens boss Gerry O’Kane feels can only help his side. He said, “No-one is giving us a chance and they probably feel Hibs just need to turn up to win the trophy. This can only be to our advantage. There is no pressure whatsoever on our girls. We are a young side and it is fantastic to be in the Cup Final in our first year back in the Premier League.”

The Spiders have had an indifferent start to their League campaign and sit third bottom of the table. This position according to O’Kane is simply down to inconsistency. He said, “It has been a time of transition for us in our first year with these players in the top division. We have lacked consistency and have failed to kill teams off when we have been on top and it has cost us points. But I feel in our semi-final win over Aberdeen we turned a corner. In our one League game against Hibernian, we also played well in one of our best performances of the season, losing only 2-1 away from home. So we have nothing to fear.

“We only made one addition to the squad in the summer in internationalist Amy MacDonald and she has been a huge player for us so far. We will definitely need her experience on Saturday and we will be there to win.”