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Womens Premiership


13 Apr 2021
© William Cherry/PressEye Marissa Callaghan and Nadene Caldwell scored for Northern Ireland
Cliftonville Ladies captain Marissa Callaghan and Glentoran Women's Nadene Caldwell netted the historic goals that clinched Northern Ireland women’s first ever place in a major tournament.
The experienced Callaghan netted the first half strike for Kenny Shiels' side’s place in next year’s European Championships in England with a 2-0 victory on the night over Ukraine, and a 4-1 win on aggregate.
Callaghan scored the opener following a free-kick into the box from Crusaders Strikers Julie Nelson to settle the nerves for the hosts.
Caldwell then put the icing on the cake in the sixth minute of added time at the end of the second half to seal the historic triumph.
Five different Danske Bank Women’s Premiership clubs were represented through six starters - Linfield’s Ashley Hutton and Rebecca McKenna were joined by Callaghan and Nelson of Cliftonville and the Crues respectively, with Glentoran goalkeeper Jackie Burns and Sion Swifts striker Kirsty McGuinness also in the line-up.
Glentoran’s Caldwell - who started Friday’s triumph in Ukraine - replaced Callaghan, while Caldwell’s club teammate Samantha Kelly was substituted on for McGuinness late in proceedings.
Ukraine's Pantsulaya was shown a straight red card in the closing moments after a reckless challenge as Northern Ireland secured a historic success.