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#SBSSWPL 2018 Preview – 24/06/18

Scottish Building Society SWPL 1

Stirling University v Spartans
Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir – 12.00pm KO

With the break after this match, both sides know this could be a huge game to shape the rest of their season. A win against a fellow side in the bottom four could give a huge boost to confidence.

Both sides come into this match with form against them. Stirling University have lost their last four matches and Spartans have lost their last six. There was also little to seperate these two the last time they met, ending in a 1-1 draw on the 22nd of April.

If Spartans win, they’ll go level with Stirling University on points. Should they win by one goal, they’ll overtake them on goals scored. If Stirling win, they’ll create a six point gap between themselves and relegation. If the match ends in a draw, positioning would depend on the Hamilton result. If they lose, then Spartans could jump above them in seventh. If Hamilton win, Stirling could end up being overtaken.

Forfar Farmington v Glasgow City
Station Park, Forfar – 1.00pm KO

The two sides meet a week later having faced off in the Scottish Cup, Glasgow City coming away with a 0-3 win. It’s back to Scottish Building Society SWPL business with both sides looking to keep their position in the league.

For Glasgow City, that position is as league leaders. They’ve played a game more than Hibernian and are three points clear. They’re also unbeaten in the league after winning ten and drawing two, both of those games against Hibernian. Forfar Farmington are also aiming to stay in the top four. Rangers have gained ground in recent weeks and could potentially overtake them before the break.

A win or a draw for Glasgow City will keep them top, though they know that every win is massive towards another title. A loss would likely allow Hibernian to leapfrog them if they were to win against Celtic. A win or a draw for Forfar will guarantee them fourth place ahead of the break but a loss could mean they fall to fifth.

Hibernian v Celtic
Ainslie Park, Edinburgh – 1.00pm KO

It’s second versus third in SBSSWPL 1, with Hibernian facing back-to-back top four opposition. This will also be David Haley’s last match in charge for Celtic, adding some extra incentive for them to end his tenure on a high.

However, it’ll be a tough ask. Hibernian are unbeaten in all competitions and have won their last four league matches, scoring 23 goals and only conceding two in the process. There will also perhaps be that painful SWPL Cup defeat in Celtic’s memory. However, they bounced back from disappointment against their Old Firm rivals on the 3rd of June with a win over Stirling midweek and will be aiming for revenge on Sunday.

If Hibernian win, they could go top if Glasgow City lose. A draw or a loss will keep them second but will damage their title chances. Celtic can’t move in the table no matter the result but will look to keep chasing down the top two.

Rangers v Hamilton Academical
New Tinto Park, Glasgow – 2.00pm KO

These two sides also meet again after their Scottish Cup match last Sunday. In that match, Hamilton Academical came back to bring the game level to 1-1 before going on to win 3-1 after extra-time.

While that was a disappointing result for Rangers, they’ll turn their attention back to the league where they’ve won their last two games. It has meant they are now just three points behind Forfar Farmington who are fourth. They’ll also hope to replicate their 4-0 win over Hamilton from back on the 22nd of April.

The previous meeting in the league between these sides perhaps shows the progress Hamilton have made. Their win over Stirling University on the 27th of May lifted them off bottom and a week later they were unfortunate not take anything against Forfar Farmington. Combined with that Scottish Cup win, Hamilton are certainly making progress.

If Rangers win, they could jump up to fourth if Forfar Farmington lose. A draw or a loss would keep them fifth. If Hamilton win, they could potentially jump to sixth if Stirling lose or draw. If Hamilton draw, they would finish the day bottom if Spartans were to win. If Hamilton lose, even a Spartans draw could mean they finish bottom.

Scottish Building Society SWPL 2

Aberdeen v Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale
Aberdeen Sports Village – 1.00pm KO

It’s eighth versus sixth in SBSSWPL 2. Aberdeen unfortunately now occupy the bottom spot after a late 4-1 loss away to Central Girls FA. That result put their opponents above them on goal difference and means they are now five points from safety. It has been eight games without a win for the home side but their last win was a 4-0 victory over Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale (EUHV) on the 15th of April.

EUHV come into this match without defeat in their last four matches. It’s this form that has lifted them out of the relegation zone and one win away from overtaking fifth-placed Hearts. They’re unbeaten at home but their away form was slightly concerning, including that big loss to Aberdeen. However, their last two away games ended all square and they’ll look to continue their unbeaten run.

If Aberdeen win, they can’t escape the relegation zone but it would cut the gap down to two points. A draw would keep the gap at five points. If EUHV win, they’ll be eight points clear of their opponents and could overtake Hearts. A draw or a loss for EUHV won’t impact their league position but it could bring them back closer to the relegation zone.

Motherwell v Glasgow Girls
Braidhurst High School, Motherwell – 3.00pm KO

League leaders Motherwell come into this match hoping to maintain their 10 point lead before the Summer break. A nearly flawless first half of the season has left them in pole position to win the title and promotion to SBSSWPL 1 for 2019. While they haven’t be as clinical in recent games, they’ve still scored an incredible 51 goals from 12 games and will hope to add to that tally on Sunday.

This is perhaps one of the worst times that Glasgow Girls could have hoped to face Motherwell. They’ve not won in their last three games and will know this will be a huge ask to take anything away from this one. While the last meeting between the sides ended 2-6 to Motherwell, Glasgow Girls were two goals up. They’ll hope to replicate this and hold on to the result.

No matter the outcome, Motherwell will finish the day first. However, they’ll want to extend their lead which could increase to 13 points. For Glasgow Girls, a win could help them jump up to third. A draw could also help them reach third but on the other hand could leave them fifth depending on St Johnstone’s and Hearts’ results. A loss could also allow Hearts to leapfrog them.

Central Girls v Hearts
Indodrill Stadium, Alloa – 4.00pm KO

It’s seventh hosting fifth in this one as Central look to build on their positive midweek win. Those three points against Aberdeen have lifted them off bottom spot and while they’re five points away from safety, the mood will be much improved. They’re only previous win in the league was their very first match of the season.

For Hearts, they’ve been on a tough run of late, not winning in their last five. However, they’ve continued to be tough opposition. Two of those games have been against league leaders Motherwell and also included a draw against second-place FC Kilmarnock. Now against a side lower in the league, they’ll want to get back to winning ways.

If Central Girls win, they can’t get out of the bottom two. However, it could cut the gap to safety to just two points. A draw or a loss could allow Aberdeen to overtaken them and they’d finish bottom. If Hearts win, they could potentially finish third before the break. A draw would likely keep them fifth but a loss could allow EUHV to overtake them.

FC Kilmarnock v St Johnstone
Rugby Park, Kilmarnock – 4.00pm KO

It’s second versus third in SBSSWPL 2 as well as SBSSWPL 1 this Sunday. FC Kilmarnock come into this match three points clear of third but now 10 points behind Motherwell. They’ve also only won once in their last four league games. They’ve got home advantage for this tie after, where they’ve only lost once this season. That will be benfitial after their 4-2 loss away to St Johnstone on the 15th of April.

St Johnstone were one of the most inform sides in the league, undeafted in five matches before the midweek round of games. However, a 4-0 loss to EUHV on Wednesday has halted that run in emphatic fashion. They’ll now look to get back on track against a side they’ll hope to catch in the league.

If FC Kilmarnock win, they’ll remain second and hope to cut the gap to Motherwell down to seven points. If they draw, they’re guaranteed to finish second and St Johnstone would need to win by six goals to overtake them. If St Johnstone draw, they could be overtaken by Glasgow Girls in fourth. If they lose, they could finish the day in fifth.

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Scottish Building Society SWPL
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