Cyprus Cup 2015
Scotland 0-2 Canada
Wednesday 4th March 2015, kick-off 5:30pm
GSP Nicosia, Cyprus
(Fleming 3, Sinclair 55)

FIFA Women’s World Cup hosts Canada were too strong for Scotland in the opening match of the 2015 Cyprus Cup.

The Scots never looked like recovering from gifting Canada a third minute goal and the London Olympic bronze medallists added a second ten minutes into the second half.

"Canada were very strong, as we expected them to be," said Scotland coach Anna Signeul. "They have been together for a long time now and they paid us the compliment of playing their strongest team against us.

"Given we are in pre-season I thought we did quite well."

Scotland's afternoon started badly when Jessie Fleming put Canada ahead. Ironically, the goal followed a Scotland attack which had been launched when new right back Kirsty Smith showed great persistence to shrug off Canadian captain Christine Sinclair.

Kim Little crossed beyond the defence to Hayley Lauder but Canada regained possession and counter-attacked quickly. Sinclair's low ball to the far post found Fleming, and she slid in to put her side ahead.

Canada should have made it two after ten minutes when good play by midfielder Sophie Schmidt found Melissa Tancredi unmarked in front of goal. When it would have been easier to score the Canadian forward sliced her shot wide.

Scotland responded to the Canadian pressure by creating a chance of their own in the 14th minute when Caroline Weir and Little gave Jane Ross a shooting opportunity. The ball was deflected into the side netting and from Ross's corner Rachel Corsie fired in a powerful header which was saved by Canadian keeper Erin McLeod.

Canada weren't allowing Scotland any time to settle on the ball and their presssing play nearly brought a goal for Sinclair in the 15th minute - but her shot went just wide of Fay's far post.

Midway through the half the Scotland captain was beaten by Fleming's powerful shot, but the ball rebounded back off the bar and to safety.

A difficult first half for Signeul's side continued when Canada's two best players combined. Sinclair got behind the defence to meet Schmidt's long ball, but her shot was just off target.

Schmidt gave Scotland a shooting opportunity when she brought Ross down 30 yards from goal. Little tapped the ball to Jenny Beattie, but the Manchester City player's powerful shot was too high.

Scotland made a much more positive start to the second half, but again came unstuck when Josee Belanger sent in a low cross from the right which Sinclair, who swept the ball into the net from twelve yards.

Lauder, with a shot which McLeod saved, had a rare sight at goal for the Scots, but although the same player had another chance minutes later, Scotland could not find a route back into the match.

In the other game in Group A, Italy, who Scotland play on Friday, beat South Korea 2-1, also in Nicosia.

SCOTLAND | Fay, Smith, Dieke, Beattie, Mitchell, Love (Fiona Brown 73), Corsie, Weir (L Ross 82), Little, Lauder, J Ross (Murray 87)

Subs not used: Arthur, Frankie Brown, Clelland, Crichton, Cunningham, Lynn, McSorley