Ahead of the 2020 season, we’ll catch-up with every single Scottish Building Society SWPL team. From new Head Coaches, new signings, and new aspirations, it’s set to be another exciting campaign.
We spoke to Hibernian LFC Head Coach, Dean Gibson. Last year’s runners-up appointed their former U23’s Head Coach after the departure of Grant Scott in December.
How are excited are you for the 2020 season? Extremely excited. The players have had a long break and are eager to get going now. The start of the new season is always good each team in the league will have their own targets and at this point everyone will feel they can achieve them. From a personal point of view this is an exciting new chapter for me and one I can’t wait to get started with.
What do you make of the changes for the new season? I think the changes are exciting and make the league more challenging. There was always a stage in a season near the end when teams didn’t really have much to play for. Now there is that chance you could end up in the play-offs, making each game meaningful right until the last ball is kicked.
What are your aims and ambitions for the new season? Our aims won’t be any different to previous years. We want to be competitive at the top end of the league and challenge in the cup competitions.
Based on the other teams in the league, do you think this will be the most competitive season ever? Definitely. I think with the investments other clubs have made has made it extremely interesting and exciting.
With the new season around a month away, how have preparations been so far? It’s been good. Although we haven’t had as much time as most to work with the players, in the short period we have they have been excellent. We are really looking forward to the competitive games starting now.
Do you have plans to/have you had much change to the squad? Although we have lost a couple of players over the break, we still have a very competitive squad. While we might look to add one or two more to the depth of the squad, we are only looking to bring players in who fit the model we are trying to build.
For perhaps new fans of the women’s game, who are some players in your squad they should look out for? I don’t like to single out players. What I can say is we have a young and talented squad here at Hibernian with some of the best players in the country. We also have players who are extremely experienced and get called up regularly for the national teams.
As well, are there any new/younger players we may see more of in 2020? We have promoted a few players from our U23s to add to what is already a young squad. Again, I don’t like to single players out but we have some real top young players at Hibernian.
You start the new season hosting Spartans. What do you make of that fixture? It’s exciting. It’s seen as a Edinburgh Derby and one that will be extremely competitive. We know that Spartans will be up for it and we will have to match them if we are to come away with a positive result. Last year was the same fixture to open the season and we know how hard a game its going to be.
How important do you think it will be to get off to a good start? Extremely important. Football is built on confidence and it’s important we get off to a positive start to build that momentum from the opening game of the season.
Finally, what would you say to encourage people to come and support your team this season? Please come and watch us this season. Hibernian have a massive fan base and one we would love to come and support us in numbers. Every team in football is determined by the size of the support they receive. The bigger numbers we get into games the stronger we will become.