Spartans set sights on cup success
Saturday, 02 March 2013
The 2013 campaign gets underway tomorrow afternoon with the opening round of the Scottish Women’s Premier League Cup and for Spartans; it’s an opportunity to take the first step towards clinching silverware.
The Ainslie Park side have endured SWPL Cup final heart-ache in each of the last three seasons and view this term’s competition as a chance to finally enjoy their day in the sun.
Spartans face Falkirk tomorrow at Spartans Academy, Edinburgh (kick-off 1:00pm) in the first round of the cup; however Manager Debbi McCulloch has already set her sights on going all the way.
“As with all competitions we enter this year, and I include the league in that, our aim is to win and we have strengthened in vital areas to give ourselves the best possible chance of doing that,” said McCulloch.
“We are under no illusions that others have also strengthened and it’s going to be an extremely tough challenge, but if we get a good start and some momentum then I think we have every chance to succeed.
“Falkirk will be an extremely tough opponent to beat in the 1st round of the cup, they have had a long pre-season to prepare and will be physical and well organised.
“It's great to be in the hat for this round as recent seasons have seen us get a bye meaning less rounds to the final.
“Pre-season has gone well with our focus on fitness being paramount in the season ahead.
“We have deliberately played some hard friendlies over the last few weeks to test ourselves and iron out any areas we feel are not quite working.
The club have added both strength and depth to their squad ahead of the new season with a mix of youth and experience added to the player pool.
McCulloch commented: “The additions have given us an edge we felt we were missing last year and provide us with a depth of quality.
“Kirsty McLaughlin was outstanding for Hibs last year and we hope she can perform for us in a similar fashion.
“Likewise we are delighted to have signed Rebecca Zoltie and her passing and link-up play is brilliant.
“We have also added Scotland under-19 full back Steph Briggs and 16-year-old Elliss Jenkins who have already shown how skilful they are and what they can bring to the squad."
Elsewhere, Celtic host SWPL newcomers Kilwinning (details tbc) with the visitors likely to give new signing Julie Fleeting her first run out, Buchan are at home to Rangers (Maud Junior FC, Maud, Aberdeenshire; kick-off 2:00pm) and Forfar Farmington travel to the Granite City to take on Aberdeen (Sunnybank Juniors, Aberdeen; kick-off 2:00pm).
Holders Glasgow City, along with Hibernian, Hutchison Vale and Hamilton Academical have a little longer to wait until they face competitive action after receiving a bye in this round.
Scottish Women’s Football League Cup coverage
SWFitba will be at Broadwood Stadium for the Cumbernauld Colts v Murieston United match (12:00pm kick-off) and Lesser Hampden to take in Celtic Reserves v Queens Park (3:45pm kick-off).
SWFitba will aim to produce video from the match at Broadwood along with match reports and photographs from both games.
For more information please visit www.swfitba.co.uk