cyprus cup

Despite yesterday’s 4-2 win over Australia, Anna Signeul’s Scotland side narrowly missed out on a Cyprus Women’s Cup final against England.

Ifeoma Dieke came back into the side alongside Jenny Beattie in central defence with Rachel Corsie moving up to midfield. Jo Love and Nicola Docherty dropped onto the bench, with Emma Mitchell the other player coming in.

The Scots stated strongly and only good goalkeeping held them at bay until the 12th minute when  Evans took advantage of a through ball from Hayley Lauder to slip the ball past Davey.

It was Evans’ fourth goal in three games and kept up the Scots record of scoring first in every game in Cyprus.

Jane Ross then scored twice in two minutes just before the half hour mark to give Scotland a 3-0 lead at the break.

Midway through the second half Australia pulled one back on controversial circumstances when  Michelle Hayman continued her run despite the far side official flagging for offside – and as the Scotland defence hesitated the substitute scored from a tight angle. Experienced Swedish referee Jenny Palmqvist allowed the goal to stand amid Scottish protests.

Scotland restored the three goal advantage after 70 minutes when Jane Ross took advantage of Jo Love’s assist to bag her hat-trick.

Four minutes later Hayman scored her second to make the score 4-2 which could have been enough to secure a place in the final, but as the players left the pitch word filtered through that France had scored with the last kick of the ball against the Netherlands in Nicosia.

That gave the French a 3-0 victory and allowed them to pip Scotland on goal difference after both sides finished with seven points in Group B.

The Scots will now play South Korea on Wednesday to decide who finishes third and fourth in the tournament.

After the game Signeul said:  “Of course for the players it would have been prestigious to play in the final against England, but personally I’m not disappointed because we have won two and drawn one of our group games against much higher ranked opponents.

“This tournament is about preparing for the World Cup qualifiers, and our games against Sweden especially. South Korea have a different style of play from the other teams so that is a positive.

“Once again the team put in an outstanding performance today.”

England earlier beat Canada 2-0 in Nicosia and book their place in the final.

Scotland (4-4-2): Fay; Brown, Dieke, Beattie, Lauder (Docherty 72); L Ross (Love 62), Little, Corsie (Sneddon 59), Mitchell (J Murray 90+2); J Ross, Evans