Jeanfield Swifts welcome Glasgow City in the SWPL Cup First Round on Sunday, and we spoke to their Head Coach Jason McCrindle ahead of their glamour cup tie.
The SWPL 2 last year was such a competitive league and one of the sides that impressed was Jeanfield Swifts with a superb attacking line-up, led by Danni McGinley. They were one of the two sides who ended up in the SWPL 2 due to the league construction and McCrindle described 2016 as a “truly unbelievable season.” Six weeks before the start of the season, they had signed just nine players, and he said “it is a testimony to the players who worked ever so hard” that the club improved throughout the season.
Ahead of the 2017 season, they’ve added to their talented squad and McCrindle believes that the club now has “real competition for places”. As with every manager/Head Coach in pre-season, he pointed out that the results of friendlies are not the aim, rather than the improvement the team and players have made.
This season’s SWPL Cup has seen the introduction of a seeded First Round, as whilst he declared himself as not being a fan, he added that he understood why it had been introduced and added – “I wouldn’t change our tie of playing a team of Glasgow City’s stature.”
McCrindle is clearly looking forward to taking on Glasgow City, saying “I don’t know who is more excited, me or the players.” He is aware of the challenge that lies ahead, saying “I’m sure we would have gained more (from the game) than Glasgow City”.
Jeanfield Swifts are playing against arguably the greatest team in the country right now, and McCrindle is aware of the dangers and the challenge City face. His message to his players is for them to be brave, highlight that one of the strengths is their attack, but “the biggest problem we may face is gaining possession back from a very good team on the ball.”
Looking ahead to the rest of the season, he wants the club to build on their 2016 season and highlighted that they “have recruited well, and have a team off the park” which he stated was important.
As of how far they could go, McCrindle stated that he would leave the predictions “to everyone else”.