“Exhausted all options,” SWPL1 rocked by club withdrawal on eve of new season

Forfar Farmington have on the eve of the new season getting underway tomorrow, had to take the very tough decision to withdraw from the SWPL1, citing difficulties in getting a squad together to fulfil their fixtures. An official statement from club reads:

“SWPL1 Withdrawal : Having exhausted all options in regards player recruitment we have been unsuccessful in securing a squad ahead of 2021/22 season. We approached the SWF towards the end of last week with our concerns and out of respect for the league, associated clubs and with a heavy heart, we formally requested our withdrawal from SWPL1 on Monday.

We’d like to thank all current & past players, staff & supporters for being part of our SWPL journey going back many years and wish all other clubs the best for the season ahead.

We will now refocus our time and energy into our ever growing youth pathway as we look ahead positively to the future.”

Forfar Farmington Committee

Aberdeen won promotion alongside Hamilton to the SWPL1 with Partick Thistle narrowly beating Dundee Utd to third position. Dundee Utd had earlier been challenging Aberdeen for the title but fell away in the closing stages as both Accies and the Jags made decent pushes for promotion. Hamilton, aided by a clever loan deal from Celtic, won that race but Partick Thistle have now unexpectedly had to get ready with just 24 hours notice to start the season not in the SWPL2 but in the Scottish women’s game’s top league, the SWPL1.

Celtic played Thistle last weekend in the SWPL Cup, highlights below.

Forfar Farmington caused Celtic some problems last season, indeed the 2 points that were dropped in the 2-2 draw at K-Park early last season were always a worry as Fran Alonso’s side chased the Champions League spot and also the title. Forfar were actually 2-0 ahead in the closing stages before 2 late goals saved a point for the Hoops.

More recently, on 2 June Forfar Farmington were back at K-Park to play Celtic and were on the wrong end of a ten goal hammering which was enough to take Celtic to the top of the league on goal difference ahead of Glasgow City playing at Spartans later in the day.  Highlights from this game are shown below.

That horrendous 10-0 scoreline – as far as Forfar Farmington was concerned – was actually repeated last weekend when Dundee Utd, an SWPL2 side, hit double figures against the then SWPL1 side in the SWPL Cup group match. That result though will now be wiped out and declared null and void.

Chief executive at SWF Aileen Campbell commented on BBC: “This is obviously a very disappointing situation for all involved. Forfar Farmington have been instrumental in helping to grow the women’s game in Scotland and I know how much the team means to all those involved at the club, along with the wider community. The last year has been incredibly challenging and, unfortunately, football has not been immune from the impact of Covid-19.”

SWPL2 will now continue with only seven clubs as the governing body decided that, as the Championship did not complete a full season, it would not have been fair to promote from that division.

We hope that this set-back is not the end for Forfar Farmington and that they can re-group and return to the SWPL structure next season.

Watch Celtic FC Women Manager Fran Alonso speaking to The Celtic Fan Media below…

Watch Celtic’s midfield star Sarah Teegarden speaking to the Celtic Fan Media, including The Celtic Star, below….

About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

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