Glasgow City made national history again today as they defeated Valur Reykjavik 3-0 in Iceland to progress to the last 16 of the UEFA Women’s Champions League.
After a tense 1-1 draw at Petershill Park last week, City needed to win away and they did not disappoint.
The first real chance in the match for the Scottish Champions came after less than five minutes when Jane Ross picked out a good run from Leanne Ross leaving the City midfielder with only the keeper to beat, but Megan McCray in the Valur goals saved well.
Although denied on that occasion, City were to take the lead on the ten minute mark. Some good passing play from City saw Clare Gemmell open the game out to Emma Mitchell and she combined brilliantly with Lisa Evans to break down to the touchline before whipping in a fierce drive across the 6 yard box which Valur’s number 11 Hallbera Gisladottir could only turn into their own net under immense pressure from the City strike force.
As the midway point in the half approached Valur were almost undone again, as Jo Love tried an audacious drive to catch the keeper off her line, but shot just over the bar.
Moments later Emma Mitchell attempted a shot from outside the box which had McCray scrambling, but the effort went wide of the keeper’s left hand post.
The home side then had their best chance of the match when striker Elin Metta Jensen broke through the heart of the City defence but shot wide under pressure from Leanne Ross.
Not long after the restart and City almost went further ahead as Jane Ross beat two defenders before firing in a low cross which McCray was unable to hold. A scramble ensued in the Valur box, before the home side eventually managed to clear.
City did however double their advantage as Jane Ross once more got the better of the full back before delivering a powerful cross from the touch-line. Valur’s Number 1, American keeper Megan MCray dived to keep the cross out, but could only palm it towards Lisa Evans who stroked home with the Valur defence trying to cover back.
Less than a minute later and Evans scored again. A long ball from Eilish McSorley, found Evans and the City striker beat her defender before racing in on goal and calmly slotted past McCray. Two excellent composed finishes from the young City striker.
Evans was nearly sent through on goal for her hat-trick when with less than ten minutes left, great play by Leanne Ross almost released Evans, who was only denied by an impressive last-minute tackle by Mist Edvardsdottir in the heart of the Valur defence.
Moments later and Eilish McSorley showed City’s own defensive capabilities with an outstanding tackle of her own in the City penalty box as Valur raced through on goal.
The icing on the cake would have been 4-0 and City should have made it so, when Kat Lindner set up her team mates, but it was not to be and the match ended 3-0 on the day, giving City a 4-1 win on aggregate.
Commenting on his side’s achievements to get to the last 16, City Head Coach Eddie Wolecki Black said: “I am absolutely delighted for everyone involved in the club. I think it is fair to say that we thoroughly deserved the result today. Most pleasing was the fact that we showed great maturity to play away from home in a European tie and dominate the ball. This negated the tactics of the home side, who are a very direct team. As a team, the girls felt that they had let themselves down last week, however, the staff believed that the away tie would suit us better and that has proved to be the case. Whilst we are very aware of our opponents in the next round and their reputation, we have considerable experience in playing German sides, but first I want the girls to get a moment to enjoy this victory and what they have achieved so far.”
Glasgow City will now face Turbine Potsdam, one of the best teams in the world, who won the UEFA Women’s Champions League in 2005, 2010 and of course were beaten finalists this year. City will travel to Germany on the 2nd/3rd November and the second leg at Petershill Park on the 9th/10th November.