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Portugal 1 (Silva pen 90) Scotland 1 (Corsie 61)
Portugal grabbed a 90th minute equaliser from the penalty spot as Scotland completed their preparations for next month's final FIFA Women's World Cup qualifying double header with a 1-1 draw in Viana do Castelo.
Jennifer Beattie was shown a red card as Mafalda Marujo tumbled in the box in the closing seconds of the match, and Dolores Silva converted for the home side. Rachel Corsie had put Scotland in to the lead in the 61st minute, lobbing the goalkeeper from the edge of the box after some patient build up play.
After a 1-1 draw with Wales in Dumfries on 3rd August, tonight's match was Scotland's final work out ahead of the crucial qualifying double header against Faroe Islands and Sweden on 13th and 17th September.
Anna Signeul's side are currently level on points with Sweden, who play their game in hand against Poland tomorrow night, at the top of Group Four. The group winners qualify automatically for the finals in Canada next summer, with the four best runners-up from the European qualifying groups going in to the play-offs.
Versatile defender Corsie started the match in the centre of midfield alongside Leanne Crichton, with Ifeoma Dieke and Beattie forming the central defensive pairing. In the absence of injured midfielder Leanne Ross, former Under-19 captain Caroline Weir came in to the starting eleven to win her seventh senior cap.
Scotland enjoyed much of the possession in the first half, but failed to convert their chances, and it was goalless at half time.
The visitors stepped up a gear after the break, with Lisa Evans starting the move that led to the opener. The winger sent in a cross from the left, which was blocked and fell to Weir. She showed great composure to keep possession in the box and send the ball back out to Evans. This time her cross fell to Corsie, who linked up with Hayley Lauder, before lobbing the goalkeeper from just outside the area for her second goal in successive matches for her country.
It looked as though Scotland had wrapped up the win, until the home side won a penalty in the final minute. Marujo raced between Dieke and Beattie inside the box, but took a heavy touch, and the ball rolled through to goalkeeper Gemma Fay as the Portuguese tumbled in the box, with Beattie protesting her innocence. Silva then stepped up to seal the draw.
Anna Signeul told www.scottishfa.co.uk: "It was definitely a good exercise, although losing a late goal, especially in that manner, was disappointing. There didn't seem to be a lot of contact and Jennifer was obviously upset to leave the pitch, but overall we can be pleased with a lot of aspects of the match.
"It was good to get the players together again ahead of two very important qualifying matches. We are at a time of year where many of the players, other than those who have been involved in Champions League qualifiers, haven't played too many games.
"It was really good to see Ifeoma start after a few injury worries in recent months, and it was positive for she and Jenny to get some game time together to give us another option in defence.
"Rachel Corsie, again, did well in midfield. She looked confident and made some great runs. Caroline Weir gives us yet another option in midfield with Leanne Ross injured, and Megan Sneddon looked very sharp when she came on in the second half."
Scotland are next in action against Faroe Islands at Fir Park, Motherwell, on Saturday 13th September, in the last home qualifier of the World Cup qualifying campaign.
Scotland: Gemma Fay, Frankie Brown, Hayley Lauder, Ifeoma Dieke, Rachel Corsie, Joanne Love (sub Emma Mitchell 62mins), Caroline Weir (sub Heather Richards 87mins), Jennifer Beattie, Jane Ross, Leanne Crichton (sub Megan Sneddon 75mins), Lisa Evans (sub Christie Murray 62mins). Subs not used: Shannon Lynn, Eilish McSorley, Nicola Docherty.
(Report by www.scottishfa.co.uk)
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