Champions League hopes end

Kylla Sjoman at Doncaster Belles training session. Picture: Andrew Roe
Kylla Sjoman at Doncaster Belles training session. Picture: Andrew Roe

DONCASTER Rovers Belles’ European dream is over after they were dumped out of the FA Cup by Liverpool.

Both finalists will go forward into next season’s Women’s Champions League.

But the Belles’ hopes of reaching Europe for the first time in their history were ended on Merseyside in a one-sided semi-final that ended 3-0 in favour of the hosts.

Super League rivals Liverpool took the lead after just 40 seconds when winger Kelly Jones swept home a cross from Nicky Harding.

Kylla Sjoman fired straight at the keeper and Katie Holtham slammed a shot over from close range as Doncaster went in search of an equaliser.

Belles fell two behind inside the first minute of the second half when Cheryl Foster’s curling 20-yard free kick went in off the woodwork before Liverpool sealed victory in the last minute through substitute Lynda Shepherd.

Boss John Buckley said: “We couldn’t have any complaints about the result.

“They were the better team on the day and it was a poor performance from our point of view, which is disappointing when you consider what was at stake.

“We just didn’t win enough second balls and weren’t anywhere near as well organised as we were against Chelsea in the previous round.

“But we have to pick ourselves up and dust ourselves down before the start of the Super League.”

n Belles’ WSL opener at Lincoln Ladies has been brought forward a day and the venue has been switched.

The game will now be played at Lincoln City’s Sincil Bank ground on Wednesday, April 13 (7.45pm).