Team’s Up – Celtic FC Women v Partick Thistle, live on BBC Alba, kick-off 12.10pm

Celtic FC Women play at the Excelsior Stadium for the final time this season as they take on Partick Thistle. After being held to a goalless draw against theRangers on Bank Holiday Monday afternoon, the Celts will be looking to keep up their form to secure the three points that would put them within touching distance of their first SWPL title and also a remarkable first for Celtic Football Club – the first time ever that a club has won both the men’s and women’s leagues in the same season!

With three great wins and two handy draws in our last five league games, we go into this clash with the better form. Thistle have managed to pick up just one win in their last five with a narrow victory over Hibs.

Celtic FC Women always seem to perform against Thistle so we hopefully won’t have any problems in front of a home crowd. The last time we played them, Caitlin Hayes, Tash Flint and Murphy Agnew helped their side pick up three points at Petershill Park as we put five past the Jags. So with that in mind, hopefully we can use this tie to increase our goal difference even more, as it could be the factor that decides the destination of the title.

Manager’s View 

So fans and journalists alike are starting to think about the possibility of the Ghirls winning the league, but Elena Sadiku is only focused on the game at hand. She spoke before the game, saying: “After the game [against theRangers]we were in the position we want to be, still on top of the league, and that’s something that we were saying ‘okay, we got the job done, now we have three games left’. You know, it’s all about recovery, it’s all about getting away to then come in today [Thursday]. You know, we’re on top of it and we’re hungry to do more.

“It’s like before, it’s one game at one time. We’re only going to focus on Partick Thistle on Sunday. The training stuff we have today, tomorrow and Saturday is only going to be about how we’re going to be prepared for the game and then after that, that is when we focus on Hearts, and after Hearts, that’s when we focus on Hibs.

“We’re close. The team at Celtic Park, the media, the staff, the people around who work at Celtic Park, every time they say something about being Champions, I’m the first one to say, ‘there’s three games left’.

“It comes to the excitement of, we can be Champions, but I’ve still got the focus of preparing the team for Partick Thistle now, and then when that’s done, I need to prepare the team the best possible way against Hearts, and then when that’s done, I need to prepare the team the best possible way against Hibs. And what happens then, that’s something that you need to try and be ready for then.”

Team News

Flint and Ashworth-Clifford drop to the bench with Menglu and Goldie starting as Elena looks at rotating the squad as the Celtic FC Women manager plots three victories in a week to deliver the SWPL1 title. Here’s today’s team…

Player’s View

Lucy Ashworth-Clifford was the player who previewed this tie. She said: “It’s exciting. Obviously, it’s a big three games. We’ve been doing well, hopefully we can keep pushing on with it. It’s going to be tough but we’ve got it in us so we’ll be alright.

“Hopefully it’s not too ugly but even if it has to be an ugly win, that’s what it takes. Not every game’s going to be perfect. We get the win, we go on to the next one.”

She also touched on the increase in popularity of the Scottish Women’s Premier League over the last season, saying: “Before I came up two years ago, I didn’t know much about the league. I just knew about Celtic and (the)Rangers to be honest. And then coming up here, it’s broadened a lot more, there’s way more girls that I know who are interested in coming up.

“It’s definitely opened up opportunities for the girls and it’s only going to make the league better the better players that you can get in. There’s a lot of players stuck in a rut maybe, down south, that can come up here and show what they’ve got and then push on.”

When asked about Tash Flint’s recent form, she said: “You can see at the weekend, she was getting in her head a bit so she’s just someone that you need to keep pushing on because she can get in her head quite a lot, but we know what she can do, you know what she can do, she knows what she can do, so it’s just giving her that little bit of a nudge and a push to say ‘look Tash, come on, you got this’ and I have no doubt in my mind that the next three games, she’s going to be banging goals in.

“It is tough. It’s a bit of a rut but she’s still performing, she’s still doing good stuff in training. She’s always around the team, she’s always giving good positiveness in the team.

“You can’t knock her, it’s just a bit of a rut, we all go through it, but like I said, I have no doubt that in the next few games, she’s going to smash it for us. She’s what we need, just like we need all the girls to come together.

“It’s not just about Tash, it’s about everyone. She’s just one player, there are many other players that can do it for us collectively. It’s just about getting everyone on the same board, whether it’s Tash, Kit [Loferski], Murphy [Agnew], Amy [Gallacher], everyone needs that little spur on and then we can smash it all together.”

Let’s hope Tash can get herself back to her ‘Goal Machine’ best soon! I, as do the supporters, have all the faith in her.

Match Officials

Jamie Wilkie is the referee for Celtic vs Partick Thistle. He is assisted by Steven Clark and Kevin Totten. Steven Spence is the fourth official.

Kick-off Time

Celtic FC Women vs Partick Thistle kicks off at 12:10pm at the Excelsior Stadium.

Where to Watch

This game will be broadcast live on BBC Alba. If you can, be sure to get down to the Excelsior to support the Ghirls in their 23/24 Airdrie farewell!

Score Prediction

Celtic Women 6 – 0 Partick Thistle.

Wishful thinking, but I can see us getting a few to increase our goal difference. I think everyone at the club knows how important it is at this stage to put ourselves in the best position possible and a big win over Thistle would do that. They’ve also conceded quite a lot in recent games, having had 20 scored against them in their last five.  Then we can sit back and cheer on Glasgow City later in the afternoon, that’s also on BBC Alba (kick-off 4.10pm).


Jessica Elliott


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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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