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SWPL 2 Title Race: Will Outsiders Glasgow Girls Lift The Trophy?

The SWPL 2 title race is going down to the wire. With one game remaining, two points separate three sides. In this series, we look at each side still in the title race. Here, we examine Glasgow Girls.

Photo: Aaron Wilson. Glasgow Girls in action against Hearts in a 1-1 draw in October
Photo: Aaron Wilson.
Glasgow Girls in action against Hearts in a 1-1 draw in October

Going into the 2016 SWPL 2 season, not many people talked about Glasgow Girls in terms of a title challenge, instead believing a good season or they would be finishing fifth or sixth. But, instead, they’ve stayed in the title race all season – however, they find themselves currently third.

Tartan Kicks spoke to Glasgow Girls in the summer break whilst the club was on a seven-game winning run and top of the table.

The manager George Patterson felt that Glasgow Girls had been unfairly written off in the promotion hunt at the SWPL launch, but had looked to make his side more tactically aware as they tried to win the SWPL 2. The reason for his confidence was in 2015, where Glasgow Girls had won the SWF First Division, Glasgow Girls had won more points than any of the SWPL 2 sides, scored more goals, kept more clean sheets and were the only Champions in the SWPL 2.

Glasgow Girls' League Position over the season
Glasgow Girls’ League Position over the season

Patterson felt that there were two key additions in pre-season that helped. The club signed a sponsorship deal with Nuffield Health and Fitness, allowing their players to use the gym and health suite and their convenience. And he picked out the signing of ex-Scotland international Jayne Cameron who he believed added experience to a young squad.

Their season began with a disappointing defeat to Hutchison Vale, a team they had beaten in the SWPL Cup First Round. But they bounced back with two wins in a row against Queen’s Park and Buchan, however, this run was followed up with a defeat to the then leaders Hamilton.

That loss though would be the last one they would suffer until August as they bounced back with a narrow 2-1 win over Inverness City.

Frequency of number of goals scored by Glasgow Girls in SWPL 2.
Frequency of number of goals scored by Glasgow Girls in SWPL 2.

At first, Paterson felt the side were still adapting to a new formation, but as the results show – it wasn’t long until the side felt comfortable within their new system.

A win over Hamilton in June saw Glasgow Girls move top of the league, and this was where they stayed until they travelled to Hearts in August but lost 2-0. They bounced back with four wins in a row, just conceding one goal in that run. They were joint top but were placed second due to their significantly inferior goal difference, something that has been a major problem for them in this title race.

Frequency of number of goals conceded by Glasgow Girls in the SWPL 2
Frequency of number of goals conceded by Glasgow Girls in the SWPL 2. Glasgow Girls have the most clean sheets in the league

October has been critical in the title race, with Glasgow Girls facing both Hamilton and Hearts. In those two games, they picked up one point in a draw with Hearts. An 11-0 win over Inverness City helped their goal difference, but there is no realistic chance of their goal difference helping them in their title race

In their final game, they face Jeanfield Swifts at home. Two points behind Hamilton, they need Hamilton to lose against Buchan and Hearts to fail to win against Hutchison Vale.

SWPL 2 Table

2016 SWPL 2

PosClubPWDLFAGDPts
12117048923+6251
22115427116+5549
32116155921+3849
4219485241+1131
52191116845+2328
62163124657-1221
721301722112-909
821211724109-857

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