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Julie Fleeting scored an impressive six goals to help Scotland to an overwhelming 8-1 UEFA Women's Championship Group 4 qualifying victory against Portugal on Saturday.
Fleeting, 22, found the net half a dozen times to add to the 16-minute hat-trick she claimed in her country's triumph against Ukraine last month, their first competitive win in three years. The San Diego Spirit striker's exploits in Nelas, which helped Scotland climb to to the top of the section, somewhat overshadowed the performance of team-mate Linda Brown, who chipped in with the other two goals.
Portugal started brightly, Sónia Silva going close with the game's first chance - but Scotland soon took control and were two goals to the good within 15 minutes thanks to Brown, who scored after eight and 13 minutes.
Scotland's third goal, Fleeting's first, arrived from a 21st-minute free-kick after Portugal goalkeeper Carla Cristina was penalised for handling a back-pass and then the floodgates opened, the Scots powering into a 6-0 half-time lead. Fleeting completed her hat-trick with goals in the 30th and 32nd minutes and added her fourth two minutes before the interval.
Inês Silva's 64th-minute strike for Portugal proved to be little more than a consolation goal as Fleeting went on to score in the 67th and 74th minutes and leave Portuguese coach Nuno Cristóvão downbeat. He said: "This was an important - but not decisive - match. We didn't play well and when they scored the third goal we crashed. But we have to believe that we can still reach the play-offs."
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