Daisy McLachlan hit a hat-trick as Pompey Women thrashed Eastleigh to book their place in the third round of the Hampshire Cup. The win for Portsmouth was not wholly unexpected given the backgrounds of both clubs but Pompey’s experience and class got saw them comfortably through in the end.
There were a total of nine different scorers at the PMC Stadium, with Rachel Panting, Jade Bradley and Sarah Eadon adding braces. Emma-Jane May, Esther Anu, Danielle Rowe and Eilidh Currie were also on target, while an own-goal added to the score.
The Blues have lifted the trophy in each of the past ten seasons and won it for the 14th time back in May.
And the start of their latest defence was encouraging, with May sending a shot narrowly over the bar in the very first minute. They were clearly in a confident mood and broke the deadlock midway through the half, as May latched on to Rowe’s incisive pass and slotted the ball into the bottom corner. The advantage was soon doubled, as McLachlan was played in by Panting and sent her shot into the same part of the net.
Full-back Ellie Kirby – still in search of her first competitive goal for the club – saw her fierce long-range effort cannon back off the post. However, McLachlan did find the target to extend the lead further on 33 minutes, finishing off a fine run with a neat finish. All of the home players wanted to get in on the act and Carla Perkins fired wide from the edge of the box.
Pompey’s interval lead was comfortable, if not emphatic. Eastleigh gave a great account of themselves in the first half and could be proud of their performance.
It was just a few seconds old when McLachlan teed-up Anu to curl a shot into the net and make it 4-0.
Moments after Currie had struck the crossbar, McLachlan completed her treble with a low strike past Eastleigh keeper Lauren Medhurst.
And five soon became six, as summer signing Rowe opened her account for the season with an effort from the edge of the area.
Panting then got her first of the afternoon, tapping the ball over the line from close range after May had done well to keep it in play.
The goals kept flowing and Currie smashed the ball home on 68 minutes before Pompey’s substitutes took control.
Bradley hadn’t been on the pitch for long when she rushed on to Panting’s pass and fired in a low effort. Portsmouth reached double figures with a bit of help from the visitors, as Eastleigh defender Kat Littleboy turned Perkins’ cross into her own net.
They were not done yet, however, and Eadon marked her return from an injury lay-off by collecting the ball from Panting and, with the help of the post, firing past Medhurst.
Bradley added her second goal of the contest moments later, courtesy of a perfectly-placed effort from 20 yards. Former Durham striker Eadon also had time to double her personal tally after converting a cross from Currie. Panting wrapped things up from the penalty spot in stoppage-time after being brought down in the box by Littleboy.
Pompey: Levett; Kirby, Tonks, Southgate (c), Currie; Rowe, Perkins; Anu, McLachlan, May; Panting
Subs: Geer, James, Eadon, Bradley, Younger
Eastleigh: Medhurst, Cave, Littleboy, Shave (c), Hill, Hammick, Beeton, Leigh, Williams, Moore, Hide
Subs: Lauran Young, Rowan Hawkins, Hayley Foreman
Match report by Ollie Cook