Celtic FC Women put on a show at the Excelsior as Spartans were pushed aside. The Edinburgh side put up a fight but were shut down as the match went on, with the Hoops securing all three points to keep them in the title race.
Celtic were kept at bay by Spartans in the opening 45 minutes, but that quickly changed as the second half got underway. With 50 minutes on the clock, Caitlin Hayes got on the end of a Paula Partido cross and headed in to give her side the lead.
Ten minutes later, a Shen Mengyu corner found the head of Hayes, but she could only hit the post with her effort. The rebound fell to Amy Gallacher though, and the Scotland international struck home. The Ghirls were in the flow of things now as Jenny Smith found the back of the net from the edge of the area, helped by a deflection.
Fran Alonso made changes after the third goal, swapping Partido and Smith for Celya Barclais and Clare Goldie. After being on the pitch for only five minutes, Goldie found the far corner of the Spartans’ net with a fantastic low strike from inside of the box.
Barclais would also make her presence known as she secured the Celts’ fifth goal of the afternoon, stabbing it in at the back post. With ten minutes to play, Hayes secured her brace after nodding a corner delivery past the goalkeeper.
The final goal came from Murphy Agnew as Celtic hit Spartans on the break. A fantastic pass from Gallacher found Agnew, who made no mistake in slotting it past the goalkeeper to round off a fantastic performance.
Despite the result, Fran Alonso feels that his side can do better. Speaking to Celtic TV after the match, he said: “We created so many clear chances, but we weren’t clinical at all. For me, the performance wasn’t good.
“I know the weather didn’t help but I thought we weren’t good. Nowhere near the level that we can play.”
This victory over Spartans keeps Celtic FC Women in second place, within one point of theRangers – who also won today. The loss for Spartans means that they are now in relegation zone, sitting in 11th place. They are only one point away from Montrose in 10th place though, so they may not be stuck there depending on how next week’s results go.
There are rumours that this could’ve been Fran’s last game on the touchline in Scotland, but that is yet to be proven and there have been no official announcements made by Alonso or Celtic. If he does stay, he will likely be looking for an incredibly dominant performance against a fifth-place Hearts team next week in Edinburgh to round off a fantastic 2023 for the Celts.
🗞 Ghirls hit magnificent seven in final home match of the year.
— Celtic FC Women (@CelticFCWomen) December 10, 2023
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