Lauren Steel scored a hat trick for Oldham Athletic Ladies, but ended up on the losing side as title-chasing Manchester City Ladies won their derby clash 10-3.
Injury to Dominique Marshall, the late withdrawal of Lauren Plowright and the second of a three-match ban for Kim Shaw left the Oldham squad even more depleted.
Morgan Leech made her first start in goal and, despite the result, acquitted herself well.
Steel made a return to form scoring in the 12th, 53rd and 88th minutes and could have had more but for some wayward finishing.
Six of the goals for Manchester City Ladies came from former Oldham Athletic youth player Feiruz Ahmed and one each from Masa Butler, Beth Mellor, Emma Massey and Ellen Bergin.
Oldham team: Leech, Mullen, Bennett, Green, Brien, Newton, Deane, Martin, Steel, Allport, Müller. Sub: Neal.
The next game is against AFC Oldham at Chapel Road on Sunday, January 6th.