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Everton are through to the last sixteen of the UEFA Women's Champions League for the first time in their history after easing to a 7-1 victory over Hungarian title winners MTK Hungaria at Widnes.
Mo Marley's side were far too strong for their young opponents in all departments and produced some excellent finishes in a win which was spearheaded by a hat-trick from Brooke Chaplen.
There was no sign of what was to come during the early stages as Everton looked a little nervous but any fears were blown away in the eighth minute. A corner on the right by Jody Handley was headed on by Rachel Unitt and Natasha Dowie was on hand to glance home a header from close range.
Two minutes later, a Jill Scott pass was cut out by Zsofia Tell but the ball looped up nicely for Chaplen to hook a firm volley past the diving Reka Szocs from the edge of the area.
Everton began to produce their best passing game and a string of chances followed. Michelle Hinnigan headed a Unitt cross wide and Chaplen twice went close, first firing past the post after a good move and then saw her shot blocked by Szocs after being released on goal by Dowie. However the tie was effectively killed off on twenty minutes as Toni Duggan crashed home a fierce 20-yard shot.
Dowie made a typically powerful run down the left and sent in a cross for Handley but, with the goal gaping, the ball was fractionally too high for the Everton skipper and she could not direct her header home. From a Hinnigan cross, Chaplen's header was turned over the bar by Szocs who also did well to keep out a shot on the turn by Dowie.
In the final minute of the first half, a long ball into the area by Chaplen was headed powerfully past her own keeper by Fanny Vago, under pressure from Duggan.
The game was over as a contest as the second half began and there was a lull in play although Dowie did have a goal disallowed for offside.
The scoring resumed in the 65th minute but this time it was MTK who found the net. After Everton gave away possession, Lilla Nagy broke down the right and her far post cross was met on the volley by Dora Papp and gave Rachel Brown no chance.
Everton's response was immediate; Gwennan Harries clipping an excellent ball into the path of Duggan who made no mistake by burying an emphatic shot into the far corner for her second goal.
Hinnigan nearly crowned a superb individual performance with an angled shot which was inches off target but a good move involving Handley and Hinnigan led to Everton's sixth, Duggan being released in the area where she unselfishly squared the ball across goal to give Chaplen an easy tap in.
Everton continued to seek more goals with Harries twice going close and Handley forcing a good save from Szocs after being set up by Alex Greenwood. However there was one more goal to come as the game went into injury time, Chaplen trying her luck from fully 30 yards with a lob which dipped just under the bar to give her a hat-trick.
All in all it was a good display from Everton, orchestrated by Hinnigan in midfield while wide players Handley and Duggan were at their best. New signing Lucy Bronze made an impressive home debut at right back and looks to be a good acquisition. A plum tie against Brondby awaits in the last sixteen and it is shaping up to be a fascinating contest.
Everton: Rachel Brown, Lucy Bronze (sub Becky Easton 64mins), Rachel Unitt, Brooke Chaplen, Fern Whelan, Lindsay Johnson, Jody Handley, Jill Scott (sub Alex Greenwood 81mins), Natasha Dowie (sub Gwennan Harries 64mins), Michelle Hinnigan, Toni Duggan. Subs not used: Danielle Hill, Fara Williams, Nikita Parris, Amy Kane.
MTK Hungaria: Reka Szocs, Alexandra Toth, Timea Gal, Zsofia Tell, Rita Mery (sub Viktoria Vig 45mins), Angela Smuczer, Dora Papp, Anita Pinczi (sub Lilla Nagy 45mins), Reka Demeter (sub Mercedesz Vesszos 70mins), Fanny Vago, Zsuzsanna Szabo. Subs not used: Eszter Horvath, Krisztina Tatai, Mercedesz Schumi.
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