Women's Premiership League Cup


29 Aug 2023
© Sion celebrate their semi-final victory over Crusaders Ephy McConnell

Sion Swifts Ladies and Cliftonville Ladies go head to head on Thursday evening in the final of the NIFL Women's Premiership League Cup at Stangmore Park (kick-off 7:45pm).

A repeat of last season's decider - which Sion won courtesy of two extra-time Cora Chambers goals - the Swifts accounted for Ballymena United Women, Mid Ulster Ladies and Crusaders Strikers while Cliftonville swept past Glentoran Women and Linfield Women.

Preliminary Round
Lisburn Ladies 4-1 Larne
Sion Swifts Ladies 6-1 Ballymena United Women

Tony McGinley's side kicked off their defence of the trophy with a comprehensive 6-1 defeat of Ballymena United at the Melvin Sports Complex.

Chloe McGlade opened the scoring for Sion after just eight minutes, with Aoibhe O'Neill following up from the spot just over ten minutes after that.

Number three arrived via Caoirse Doherty just after the half-hour mark but the visitors pulled one back courtesy of a Megan Henry penalty in the latter stages of the first half.

But three goals in the final 20 minutes or so saw Sion run out comfortable victors.

Cora Chambers came off the bench to make it 4-1, ahead of a strike by Academy League striker Cache Crumlish-Hawes before O'Neill bagged her second spot-kick of the game with three minutes remaining.

Meanwhile, at the Bluebell Stadium, Lisburn Ladies fought back from a goal down to get the better of Larne Women.

Nina Morrison had handed the visitors the early advantage, but goals from Danni Jennings and Michelle McDaid tipped the balance in Lisburn's favour by the break.

Stacey Murdough then hit a second half double to make sure of the win for the hosts.


Cliftonville Ladies 3-0 Glentoran Women
Derry City 0-4 Crusaders Strikers
Linfield Women 5-0 Lisburn Ladies
Sion Swifts Ladies 4-0 Mid Ulster Ladies

Sion were just as prolific in the quarter-finals, hitting four goals without reply past Mid Ulster, again at Melvin.

Aoibhe O'Neill fired the holders in front after 11 minutes from the spot, with Caoirse Doherty doubling up midway through the first half.

That was how it stayed until the latter part of the second half. Kerry Brown made it 3-0 with a deflected effort before Zoe McGlynn wrapped the scoring up right at the end.

Meanwhile, the Reds entered the competition and recorded an impressive three-goal victory over the Glens at Solitude.

Scoreless at half-time, the deadlock was broken five minutes after the break when Caitlin McGuinness teed Marissa Callaghan up to rifle the opening goal past keeper Ellie Scott.

Callaghan struck again minutes later in off the underside of the bar, with Hannah Doherty adding a third with around a quarter-of-an-hour remaining when her corner from the right ended up in the net, albeit via a potential ricochet.

The last eight also produced comfortable victories for Linfield and Crusaders Strikers.

Mia Moore and Carla Devine both bagged a couple of goals each as the Blues raced into a four-goal lead over Linfield with barely 20 minutes on the clock, with Emily Reid completing the scoring right at the end.

And the Crues hit four goals without reply past Derry City Women. The damage was done with a goal from Darcie McNeill and Lisa Armour either side of the break, with further finishes coming midway through the second half courtesy of Rachel McLaren and Amy McGivern.

© Ephy McConnell

Cliftonville Ladies 6-1 Linfield Women
Crusaders Strikers 0-1 Sion Swifts Ladies

The Reds emphatically strode past the Blues in a stunning display of dominance in the last four.

Toni Leigh Finnegan opened the scoring for the Reds on 21 minutes, sweeping home a free kick from 25-yards out after Vicky Carleton had been fouled.

Marissa Callaghan doubled their advantage seven minutes later, finishing at the back post with Caitlin McGuinness adding a third before the break with a well taken effort.

Abbie Magee further extended the Reds’ advantage shortly after the break when her long range shot clipped the crossbar and bounced over the line.

Keri Halliday then pulled a goal back for Linfield on 54 minutes, racing through on goal before finishing past Rachel Norney.

Fi Morgan ensured the home side regained their four goal cushion as she planted a header into the far corner from a Finnegan free-kick delivery.

Nine minutes from time Carleton, against her former side, made it six. She was fouled in the box before slamming home the resultant spot kick to ensure the Reds’ passage to another cup final.

It was a much closer affair as the Swifts edged past the Strikers at Seaview.

Sion came close to opening the scoring after Zoe McGlynn played Cora Chambers through on the right side of the box but her goalbound effort was denied by Maddy Harvey-Clifford's outstretched right foot.

Chambers proved to be a threat again after tussling with Caitlyn Hamilton and Beth Chalmers before the ball fell for Chloe McGlade to fire over from 12 yards out.

But Chambers eventually got her reward on 38 minutes after collecting a Kelly Crompton throw-in down the right before creating space to beat Harvey-Clifford low into the bottom right corner from the edge of the area for what proved to be the only goal of the game.

2023 Women’s Premiership League Cup Final match arrangements
Cliftonville Ladies v Sion Swifts Ladies
Date: Thursday 31 August 2023 – kick-off: 7.45pm
Venue: Stangmore Park, Dungannon
Admission: Adults: £5, Under-16’s: FREE
Watch Live on the Official NIFL YouTube channel from 7.30pm for full match coverage