Celtic Women move closer to first EVER title as blown away rival boss declares 'this is their year' - SWPL roundup

Elena Sadiku celebrates Celtic's thumping win -Credit:Celtic FC / X
Elena Sadiku celebrates Celtic's thumping win -Credit:Celtic FC / X

It could be Celtic's year for an historic first ever SWPL title - according to Hearts manager Eva Olid.

The Spaniard admitted it as a hard watch at Celtic Park as her side were dismantled 5-0. A hat-trick from Murphy Agnew was supplemented by goals from Lucy Ashworth-Clifford and Natasha Flint as Celtic steamrolled over the top of Hearts. It re-established Celtic's two-point lead at the top of the table and also gave their goal difference a healthy boost; they are 16 goals better off than nearest rivals Rangers.

Jo Potter's side lost to Hearts at the Oriam on Wednesday night with Olid, having faced both teams within a five-day period, believing that Celtic have the look of champions. Asked who she fancied would come out on top, she said: “For me, Celtic. And so clear. As I see football, I see them playing a possession game and I see them from years ago playing a style of play.

“They have technical players with a lot of quality. They have worked together with the same patterns and you can see that they are so ready. I think this year that this is Celtic’s year.”

Certainly, there was no sign of Celtic feeling any heat in this one. They had gone into the game knowing that Rangers were back at the summit of the table after their 3-1 win over Partick Thistle in the early kick-off. Glasgow City too beat Hibs 1-0, a result that keeps them within four points of Rangers and six off of Celtic. “I don’t care what the other teams are doing,” said Hoops boss Sadiku.

“The only focus is on us. It won’t change the pressure. The only thing we need to focus on is us. We have been performing well and that is something that the girls are confident about. Our aim is the same for every game. It is about concentrating and getting the points and that is what the players have done. “It looks like they are enjoying the style of play.”

The superior goal difference hasn’t gone unnoticed by the Swede. Ashworth-Clifford set an immediate tone as she opened the scoring after just three minutes. Celtic didn’t look back as Hearts, disjointed and leggy, were architects of their own downfall with some desperately poor defending.

“We do need to think about it but it is also the way we play football,” said Sadiku. “We love to create chances and we love to score goals. We know about the goal difference but I think we can push in every game to keep being creative and scoring goals because we do it well."

The only disappointment will have been a crowd of just 3687 for the game inside Celtic Park – a sharp decline from last season’s record attendance of 15,822 for the final game of the season.

At the other end of the table, Dundee United remain rooted three points adrift of Hamilton Accies. Both were beaten yesterday – Accies lost 3-0 to Spartans while United were on the wrong end of a 5-1 defeat to Aberdeen. Elsewhere, Motherwell beat Montrose 2-1.