City defeat Spartans to keep ahead in title race

Second half goals from Leanne Ross and Hayley Lauder earned City a 2-0 victory over Spartans in a tough match for the Champions at the Excelsior Stadium.

Although City dominated possession for the majority of the first half, chances were few and far between with a Jo Love deflected effort which cannoned off the post being the home side's best chance for the opening goal in the first period.

It was an improved second half from Scotland's Champions League representatives, and City almost took the lead four minutes after the restart. Hayley Lauder broke down the left but a good save from the impressive Eartha Cummings in goals for Spartans denied Lauder and then team mate Abbi Grant who tried to fire home the rebound. The ball then broke to City Irish international striker Clare Shine, but the Cork native saw her effort hit the post.

The chance City needed to make the breakthrough came from the spot, when substitute Erin Cuthbert saw her effort come off a Spartans hand and up stepped Captain Leanne Ross to fire past Cummings from 12 yards to give her side the lead. 

The relief was evident and two minutes later City made it 2-0 when Lauder headed home a Nicky Docherty cross at the back post to ensure all three points went to the home side.

Commenting on the victory, City Head Coach Scott Booth said, "I knew that we would have to work for our victory today as Spartans made it difficult for us last time. For the first period of the game we didn't pass the ball well enough, we allowed the opposition to regroup and we didn't have enough quality around the box to trouble them and it was unlike us not to have that part of our game on song. 

"We had more conviction about us in the second half and we kept the ball better. It was good that we got the reaction in the second half and good that we took a couple of chances and it could have been more but we need to start games better."

With three games remaining, Glasgow City lead Hibernian by three points and the two side's meet in what is sure to be a cracker next Sunday at Albyn Park.