Hibs Ladies lose their grip on League Cup as Celtic pounce

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A SINGLE defensive lapse proved costly for holders Hibernian Ladies as they were knocked out of the Premier League Cup by Celtic at Lennoxtown.

Heather Richards scored the only goal of the game seconds before the half-time whistle.

Richards’ effort proved to be the only shot on target during the entire 90 minutes on Sunday and was a bitter pill to swallow for the Hibees given it came from their error.

Hibs coach Willie Kirk commented: “Any defeat is horrible and difficult to take but it’s even bitterer when you’re the holders and you go out so early in the competition.

“After the game I told the girls that they looked scared to lose and this is something they will have to address themselves.

“There was little between the teams to choose from and neither side will be happy with their performance.

“Now we must pick ourselves up and be ready for Inverness next weekend when we will be looking to deliver a strong performance.”

Across the city Hutchison Vale were surprisingly defeated by newly promoted Aberdeen in a game made farcical by the blustery weather conditions.

The Dons, with a strong wind behind them, raced into a 3-0 half-time lead which proved a mountain too high for Vale to overcome despite Laura Dunn pulling a goal back after the break.

“If I’m being honest the standard of play wasn’t particularly great however the conditions had a great deal to do with it,” commented Vale coach Ian MacDonald. “The howling wind made it a game of two halves with Aberdeen completely dominating the first and us the second. It’s always disappointing to lose the first game of the season because you are hoping for a positive result to set you up for the games ahead.

“Each of the goals we lost was avoidable, however, we must move on and I’m looking for a reaction next week against Kilmarnock.”

Having received a bye in the first round of the SWPL Cup, Spartans sought to fill a blank weekend with a meaningful fixture ahead of next week’s league opener.

A friendly match with Hamilton Academical was arranged with Ann Taylor and Trisha McLaughlin on target in a 2-2 draw.