Cliftonville maintained a 100% winning start to their Danske Bank Women’s Premiership campaign with a late derby win over Crusaders Strikers.
Crusaders Strikers 1-2 Cliftonville
Linfield 0-4 Glentoran
Lisburn 0-0 Derry City
Mid Ulster 1-2 Sion Swifts
Kirsty McGuinness had given the Reds a second-minute lead but a three-minute spell just before the hour mark appeared to turn the game on its head.
Mairead McCann equalised in the 57th minute for the Crues and three minutes later she was brought down inside the penalty area by Kelsie Burrows. However, Reds goalkeeper Rachael Norney saved Emily Wilson’s penalty and then blocked the follow-up attempt from Jessica Rea.
With just over ten minutes remaining on the clock, defender Abbie Magee grabbed a late winner after winning the ball back inside the box and firing home – making it eight wins from eight in the league for Cliftonville.
Glentoran remain just two points off the pace – having played a game more – as a Joely Andrews hat-trick propelled them to a four-goal victory at Linfield.
Chloe McCarron opened the scoring against her former club in the opening minute and her Northern Ireland international teammate Andrews then bagged a hat-trick to complete another big derby win for the Glens.
That result allowed Sion Swifts to leapfrog two places into third as they secured a 2-1 victory at basement side Mid Ulster.
Incredibly, the visitors were two goals up inside the opening four minutes thanks to goals from Caoirse Doherty and Naomi McLaughlin.
However, the hosts regrouped and did not concede another – with Jessica Magee’s goal midway through the second half setting up a tense finish, but Sion held on for the points.
The night’s other match saw a new-look Derry City Women – with multiple mid-season additions making their league debuts – hold Lisburn Ladies to a goalless draw at the Bluebell Stadium.