Celtic Women’s first ever match at Celtic Park saw them beat their rivals Rangers 5-1 to return to the top of the SWPL 1 table.
It was Celtic who had the first real chance when Christie Murray’s free-kick was saved by Rangers’ keeper Claire Johnstone and Chloe Craig fired the rebound into the side-netting. They took the lead in the 18th minute when ex-Rangers player Kirsty Howat scored from just six-yards out.
Rangers could have equalised when a corner picked out Chantelle Brown, but the Scotland Under-19 international fired her shot over. Minutes later, the home team could have extended their lead further, but Kerry Montgomery’s header just went wide.
But in the 43rd minute, Celtic did extend their lead. Montgomery’s brilliant pass found Suzanne Mulvey and her superb strike gave Johnstone no chance.
It took just two minutes of the second half for Celtic to make it 3-0 through Montgomery.
Rangers then pulled a goal back in the 65th minute when Brown’s cross found Katey Turner and she lobbed the Celtic keeper Megan Cunningham.
Eight minutes later, Celtic made it 4-1.Stephanie Knox’s cross picked out Howat, and her stunning volley found the top-right corner.
And in the 82nd minute, Celtic scored their fifth when the Scotland international Christie Murray’s shot found the bottom corner to mark her debut after joining during the international break.
The result sees Celtic go top of the table, although they have played a game extra than Spartans and Glasgow City. Rangers remain in fifth.
Celtic: Megan Cunningham, Stephanie Knox (Courtney Whyte 61), Chloe Craig, Natalie Ross (Ellis Dalgliesh 81), Alex Middleton (Kirstin McGuire 61), Georgie Rafferty (Danielle Connolly 78), Kelly Clark (c), Christie Murray, Kerry Montgomery, Kirsty Howat (Joanne Paton 78), Suzanne Mulvey.
Subs: Lisa Kerr (GK), Collette Cavanagh.
Rangers: Claire Johnstone, Megan Foley, Rhonda Jones, Rachel O’Neill (Ashley Nicolson 90), Jordan McLintock, Shelley Faughan (Claire Adams 54), Clare Gemmell (c), Chantelle Brown, Kirsty McLaughlin, Katey Turner (Sarah Robertson 72), Lisa Swanson (Hayley Sinclair 54 (Rhianna Tweedie 80)).
Subs: Laura Hamilton (GK), Danica Dalziel.
Ref: Ross Birrell Assistant Referee: Alan Burnett and Robert Peacock.
Updated SWPL 1 Table