Everton 2 Doncaster Rovers Belles 3

Courtney Sweetman-Kirk
Courtney Sweetman-Kirk

Substitute Courtney Sweetman-Kirk’s second half hat trick stunned Everton and earned Doncaster Rovers Belles a 3-2 victory in a pulsating FA WSL Continental Tyres Cup tie.

Goals from Emily Hollinshead and Ellie Stewart had put the home side in firm control at the break.

But Sweetman-Kirk’s introduction changed the game as her 17-minute treble turned the tie and handed the Belles a first win in this season’s competition.

The visitors started slowly and trailed within five minutes as Hollinshead pounced on a loose ball to drill home from 12 yards, before Stewart doubled the advantage with a powerful header from an unmarked position.

Bethany England went close on two occasions in the first half, shooting wide from distance before forcing a smart save from Everton keeper Kirstie Levell, but the introduction of Sweetman-Kirk on 64 minutes inspired a remarkable turnaround.

The striker poked home with her first touch at the back post after Emily Simpkins’ header struck the bar, before levelling eight minutes later, heading over Levell from close range.

And her treble was complete when Sue Smith freed the striker with a flick on, and she scrambled the ball home past the desperate dive of Levell.