“It was not Celtic. It was not us. From the first minute,” Elena Sadiku

After Celtic FC Women’s 2-0 loss to theRangers in the semi-final of the Women’s Scottish Cup, Elena Sadiku spoke to the media. The Celtic Star was in attendance and got the manager’s opinions on Jo Potter’s comments about having the Celts figured out…

Q: Just how disappointing was that?

Elena Sadiku: “Very.”

Q: What went wrong?

Elena Sadiku:  “If you look at this game as how we played, it was not Celtic. It was not us. From the first minute, I thought that we were not us. We were not confident, we were not brave, and we don’t deserve to win. And that’s something that we need to learn from because if we play like this, we’re not going to win anything and that’s just the truth.”

Q: How does that happen? Is it because of how (the)Rangers set up?

Elena Sadiku:  “(the)Rangers always play the same. I don’t think it’s anything about them. I just think we’re not really on today. You can see it in our duels, you can see it in how we play. I feel like we were just not on and that’s the first impression from the game. Obviously, it’s going to be good to watch the game after and see what didn’t work tactically but I felt like the players that I know play better than this.”

Q: Does that come down to a bit of stage fright?

Elena Sadiku:  “I don’t know. I mean we’re Celtic and we should always be hungry to win games. Especially when it comes to a semi-final. I don’t know what it really is but it’s something we need to fix because we have an important game on Wednesday.”

Q: Tash Flint came deeper and deeper, and it almost removed your focal point in the final third?

Elena Sadiku:  “Yeah, I think it comes from her being frustrated not getting the ball. It’s something that I think she does it because she wants to help but I also think it means we have one less player up front. Listen, just to make it clear, it’s not who we are. How we played out there today, especially first half, we started the second half better, but then if we let in a goal from a corner, which we are really good at [defending set pieces], it just means that we aren’t really on it and that just shows everything.”

Q: Was Amy Gallacher fully fit?

Elena Sadiku:  “No. She could only play 30 but I pushed her for more.”

Q: Is the message now that you’ve got to pick yourself up as quickly as possible?

Elena Sadiku:  “Listen, like I’ve said, if we want to win the league, this is not how we can look like. The only thing we can do is learn from it, get fuel from it and just get back to doing what we can do, and that’s playing really good football. But we also need to be willing to fight for it as well and I didn’t see it as much today as we usually can see.”

Q: Do you think the players can use the hurt from this game to take them to the title?

Elena Sadiku:  “100%. I’m very confident we’re going to bounce back.”


Q: TheRangers manager Jo Potter was just in here saying she thinks that she had you and Celtic figured out today. Is that something that worries you?

Elena Sadiku: “I don’t know what they did to be honest that made them tactically better. We just didn’t play good. We could have attacked the space much better. Just an example, we didn’t win second balls much today and that’s normally something we’re really good it. If that’s something that their tactic did, I don’t know. Obviously, I don’t think (the)Rangers were so much better than us because I don’t think they created a lot. They had some long-distance shots on Kelsey [Daugherty] that she saved and they got corners from but I thought it was a very boring game, to be honest, but that’s just my opinion right now.”

Q: It seemed like a game where both teams were afraid to lose it at times?

Elena Sadiku:  “Maybe. We were too careful. I thought Rangers could push it, they pushed a little bit more than us. That’s why in the end, they win. We just need to learn from this and bounce back as fast as possible.”

Q: You lost your opening game to theRangers and to Glasgow City too but is this the sorest one to take?

Elena Sadiku:  “I think it comes to, I’m mostly disappointed. I don’t know if it’s disappointed, but I wish my players were more brave and confident that they can do well. And that’s something that’s hurting right now because it comes back to if I could have done something differently to make them believe that we’re Celtic and we’re better. It’s something that I need to look back to and try to figure out what the problem was because I think the training has been good, we knew how (the)Rangers are going to play and that’s why they didn’t create so much.

“In the end, maybe it was a game that no-one wanted to lose. They scored from a set piece and obviously, I made a decision where I don’t know if it’s the right one, to put Caitlin [Hayes] up to try and force it a little bit but it was not successful and I don’t know exactly how the second goal came but I think it was just from their right side, Kelly missing and they get through. We just need to bounce back because I’m really excited for the last five games and I really want us to win, so we just need to bounce back.”

Jessica Elliott

About Author

I'm a student journalist and Celtic supporter. I'm delighted to have been recently appointed women's football writer for The Celtic Star, where the coverage of the Celtic FC Women's team has been incredible and unrivalled over the past three seasons.

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