More Celtic frustration in a weekend to forget, an update on Fran’s future

Hearts Women 1-1 Celtic FC Women – More Hoops Frustration in a Weekend to Forget…

Celtic FC Women dropped two points yesterday in the capital with a Caitlin Hayes equaliser early in the second half cancelling out Georgia Timms early strike which has to be said was poorly defended by the Celtic defence.  That draw increases the gap on leaders theRangers to three points as they won their match against Hamilton.

It adds up to a weekend to forget for Celtic with the first team losing at Celtic Park to Hearts on Saturday and the Celtic B team going down but the same 2-0 scoreline to East Kilbride in the Lowland League at Airdrie on the same afternoon.

The draw in Edinburgh brings to a close the year for the Celtic FC Women side who now have a festive break which will give the squad the chance to recover from the bug that has been affecting the squad on recent days and is perhaps a contributing factor in the underwhelming performance at Hearts.

Fran Alonso is NOT concerned about budgetary issues at Celtic, The Celtic Star understands. This has been reported in MSM in recent weeks.

And it will also be a period when we’ll learn whether there is anything in the speculation linking Fran Alonso with a move away from Celtic. We tried to get clarification on this over the past week but all we could uncover is that there is no dispute or unhappiness from Alonso regarding budgets at the club that are available to him. Whether there is an offer he can’t refuse to move to America or Mexico remains to be seen.

It was an even start to the game at Oriam, but it was the hosts that found the opener. Georgia Timms did well to break away from the Celtic defence with eight minutes on the clock. The forward fired a shot past Kelsey Daugherty and into the back of the net.

The goal seemed to have thrown Celtic off as we couldn’t seem to play our way into the game. Whenever we got up the pitch, our attacking was sloppy and uninspired.

In fact, it was Hearts who managed to come close another two times as Timms and Girasoli fired towards goal. Both attempts came to nothing, but Hearts were still in the lead.

As half-time was approaching, Shen Mengyu shot from distance for the Hoops’ first good attempt of the game. The ball deflected off Georgia Hunter on the way and it was an easy claim for Charlotte Parker-Smith, leaving the Celts trailing.

Hearts struck on the counter after a Celtic throw-in came to nothing, and in an attempt to clear the ball, Daugherty struck the ball directly into the face of Kelly Clark. The skipper went down with a bloody nose, but she was able to get back up and continue the game.

The Hoops finally found the breakthrough in the second half. Caitlin Hayes received the ball just inside of the area and had time to take a touch before dispatching it beyond the goalkeeper.

The Celts pushed for the winner as the game went on, with Colette Cavanagh even attempting an overhead kick. Maria McAneny came close, forcing Parker-Smith into a good save to tip it over the bar.

Hearts were also pushing though as Girasoli almost scored with a header. Up the other end, Caitlin Hayes came the closest out of all 22 players as her header narrowly missed the net.

And with that last chance, the final whistle went, and the Celts had to accept a single point on this occasion.

Fran Alonso spoke to Celtic TV after the match. He said: “We feel very disappointed, because two points are dropped against a team who we’ve never dropped points against before.

“The first half performance was very poor from us. Same as probably the last league game. The first half we didn’t play anywhere near the level we can. Today, the team were very reactive, not proactive at all.”

Speaking about the strong start to the season, he said: “It’s our best ever. We are three points behind the leaders. We are in the semi-final of the Sky Cup. We are going to be defending our Scottish Cup that we’ve won for two years in a row. It’s fantastic. We’ve only dropped five points.”

The draw means that we are still in second place, but three points away from theRangers, who still sit top of the table after winning 4-0 against Hamilton Accies today. The point moves Hearts above Partick Thistle, into fifth place, going into the winter break.

Questions will be asked as to why Shen Menglu didn’t start. As far as we are aware, she is not injured, so it is confusing as to why she didn’t play a single minute of football today.

To cover the negative news, this could prove to be Fran Alonso’s last game in charge of the Celts, as rumours of his departure have been popping up recently. Mexican team, Monterrey, and NWSL side, Houston Dash, are reportedly interested in the Spaniard. Hopefully we can keep Alonso for at least a little bit longer, as I fully believe he is the man to take Celtic to glory.

With the conclusion of today’s match, the SWPL1 is officially on winter break. League action will return on 14 January , 2024, when Celtic take on Montrose at the Excelsior.

Domestic action will be back sooner though as we look to defend our Scottish Cup. We visit Ayr United on 7 January for a third-round tie. Details will be available closer to the time and will be included in The Celtic Star’s preview of the match.

We’ll take a look back at 2023 for the Celtic FC Women’s team at the end of December. What a year it”s been!

Here’s the SWPL1 table as it stands going into 2024…

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.

Comments are closed.