Category: SWPL Team News

Scott Eyes Improvement Despite Treble In Buchan Victory

Hat-trick hero Julia Scott was elated to grab the match ball but admits she feels she could have played even better in Forfar Farmington’s 7-0 win on Sunday.

Scott netted three while another was awarded as an own goal before having one ruled out for a contentious offside decision as the side coasted into the quarter finals of the SSE Scottish Women’s Cup.

The attacker explained that she is always of the belief that she can do better after every game with this pushing her to improve each week.

Scott said: “I’m delighted with the win, it’s good to get on the score sheet but I always feel I could have performed a little better, I think that pushes me in training. I’m not sure what happened with the offside goal but that’s football, I was positive I was behind the ball but you have to just play on and push for the next one.”

The former Scotland internationalist has now netted eight goals as well as chipping in with ten assists in what has been a successful season so far and Scott admits she is just happy to be playing each week.

“It’s a season of up and downs for me but I am extremely happy and grateful to be on the pitch playing the game I love, I always strive for more and hopefully there will be.”

Farmington were drawn away to SWFL1 South outfit Cumbernauld Colts in the SSE Scottish Women’s Cup quarter finals and Scott is under no illusions about the difficulty of the tie with Colts sitting third in the league below Forfar.

“Cumbernauld Colts may be the only team out with the Premier League left in the cup but they are not a team to be underestimated. They have done very well to get into the quarter finals and looking at their results they can score goals.”

“We will have to go into this game like any other, firstly for the win but also under no illusions that it will be a walk in the park. Cumbernauld will be motivated being the ‘underdog’ so we need to not be complacent and play the way we know we can.”

2016 was a season to forget for the club with relegation from Scottish Women’s Premier League One; however Scott hopes to prove that they are a club that can bounce back.

“After a disappointing season in 2016 I hope we can prove that Forfar is a team that will bounce back and compete no matter what the challenge is. We will take it one game at a time and who knows what could be on the cards for this club.”

This Sunday sees a return to league action and a trip to Jeanfield Swifts in Perth; Scott feels it will be a tricky fixture at the McDiarmid Park Astroturf.

“Jeanfield are a strong, determined side so it will be tough but hopefully we will go into the game with confidence after Sunday’s result. Every team wants to take three points from us so they will have that motivation going into the match. Even at 7-0 we didn’t play as well as we could have in parts of the game so we will need to rectify that for travelling to Jeanfield.”

SSE Scottish Women’s Cup Third Round: Forfar Farmington 7 Buchan 0

Forfar Farmington cruised into the quarter finals of the SSE Scottish Women’s Cup with a 7-0 win over Buchan as Julia Scott grabbed a hat-trick.

An own goal from Lauren Sangster opened the scoring with Scott’s treble, Robyn Smith and Alana Bruce’s stunners and Laura Parsley completing the scoring in the third round tie.

Four changes were made from the previous week’s win over Hearts; Fiona McNicoll, Leah White, Beth Shillitto and Kirsty Deans replacing Chantelle McKay, Alison Debio, Gemma Collier and Danni McGinley.

Farmington were unlucky not to go ahead less than sixty seconds in when Julia Scott’s header was held by Lauren Sangster from Alana Bruce’s cross.

The deadlock was broken in the fifth minute; Scott’s corner was spilled into the net by Sangster. The goal was originally credited to Scott, however the dubious goals panel judged it to be a Sangster own goal.

The hosts kept the pressure up despite the early goal as Scott saw an effort fumbled before Sangster had to look sharp to save Nicola Davidson’s powerful effort.

In the 18th minute Mark Nisbet’s side were awarded a free kick on the touchline in line with the edge of the box. Scott stepped up and sent the set piece flying past Sangster, this time the goal was definitely the attacker’s.

Cheryl Kilcoyne had a shot blocked by the defence before sending a cross into the area for Scott to bundle home; the assistant ruling out the goal for offside.

It was 3-0 on the half hour mark with Scott scoring her second of the afternoon; sending a 20 yard free kick over the top of Sangster.

Robyn Smith added to the tally in the 39th minute with a fantastic 25 yard for her eighth of the season.

Farmington continued their dominance after half time with Smith and Kirsty Deans denied by the defence within the first 25 seconds of the second half.

In the 47th minute sub Laura Parsley flicked on a Smith cross but Scott couldn’t divert it past the keeper.

Parsley fired straight at the keeper nine minutes later before she was denied again shortly after.

Fellow sub Kayleigh Noble had a cross-cum-shot palmed away by Sangster and the keeper did the same again with a Parsley effort seconds later.

The forward looked keen since coming on but Sangster came to the rescue of the visitors yet again in the 65th minute, blocking another shot with her feet.

Parsley did have the ball in the net two minutes later but was adjudged to be offside.

Buchan’s only clear cut opportunity of the match came through Louise Brown in the 68th minute; her shot held by Fiona McNicoll.

Alison Debio and Parsley had efforts cleared by the defence but the lead was eventually extended in the 75th minute when Noble’s through ball found Scott and she made her way towards goal before curling home from outside the box.

Sophie Young was denied her first goal for the team when her shot was cleared off the line after beating Sangster but it wasn’t long before Farmington netted their sixth with another excellent finish.

Alana Bruce collected the ball on the left wing and made her way towards goal; beating a defender before giving Sangster no chance.

The scoring was completed with seven minutes left when Beth Shillitto’s shot was spilled and Parsley gleefully tapped the ball home after being denied so many times since coming on.

The result sends Farmington through to the quarter finals for the first time since being runners up in 2012. Their potential opponents could be any of Glasgow City, Jeanfield Swifts, Cumbernauld Colts, Glasgow Girls, Hamilton Academical, Rangers or the winners of Hibernian vs Celtic.

Forfar Farmington: Fiona McNicoll, Leah White, Erin Cattanach, Beth Shillitto, Robyn Smith (Kayleigh Noble 52), Nicola Davidson (Alison Debio 46), Alana Bruce (Ellie Cook 82), Kirsty Deans, Cheryl Kilcoyne (Laura Parsley 46), Megan McCarthy, Julia Scott (Sophie Young 75)

Subs not used: Kayleigh Brough, Chantelle McKay (gk)

Buchan: Lauren Sangster, Gemma Rae, Fiona Ritchie, Danica Ritchie, Bethany Emslie, Joanna Murphy, Caitlin Matthews, Leanne Reid, Michelle Sutherland (Louise Brown 46), Jenna Shepherd, Sophie Anderson (Sabrina Alexander 70)

McKay Proud Of Performance In Debut Victory

Debutant Chantelle McKay was delighted to take all three points in her Premier League bow and admits she is loving life since joining Forfar Farmington in December.

The 20 year old moved from SWFL1 North outfit Tayside Ladies and after a spell in the under 23’s she was given her chance in Sunday’s 3-1 win over Hearts.

McKay is keen to play a part in the Farmington title challenge however she is happy to gain more experience with the squad, learning from current number one Fiona McNicoll.

The young stopper hasn’t played since before the summer break but feels that Sunday’s milestone has given her a massive boost in confidence.

She said: “I‘m delighted to have made my debut for the main squad, I was nervous at first but I’m overwhelmed to come this far in my football career. It has given me a major confidence boost in myself especially after not playing a competitive game in over ten weeks.”

McKay was pleased to come away with the three points after her own performance and believes she put in a good performance to impress head coach Mark Nisbet.

“I was so chuffed to be part of the winning team and taking away all 3 points today against a very decent Hearts side. Our team, as a whole, fully deserved the win as everyone played their own part within the game and did exceptionally well.”

The keeper continued: “I felt that I performed the best I could for making my debut, I was nervous but as the game went on I settled down and felt more comfortable. I don’t think I had much to do throughout the game, but with the decisions and saves I had to make I felt like I did well.”

“Mark told me before the game what he expected of me and after the game he praised me by saying I done everything he asked. I was just gutted not to keep a clean sheet.”

Since joining Farmington from Tayside Ladies in the close season, McKay reckons she has fit in with the family ethos as the club and lavished praise on fellow keepers Fiona McNicoll and Oliwia Gach.

“Ever since I joined the club in December, I have been welcomed by everyone and feel like part of the family now. I have enjoyed the change of football lifestyle and I am enjoying my football now, more than I ever was, I’m receiving some of the best coaching at one of the top clubs in the area.”

McKay continued: “I thoroughly enjoy coming to training week in, week out and training with Fiona and Oliwia, I couldn’t ask for a better group of goalkeepers to work with.”

“Fi is very good at everything she does and I enjoy training with her as she inspires me to one day be as good as her, Liv has come on so much from the first time I met her and working with her allows me to help her and encourage her in training.”

After making her Premier League debut, McKay is eager to play a bigger part in the season as Farmington chase the SWPL2 championship.

“I really hope that I can make more appearances this season for the Premier League team as I enjoyed getting 90 minutes under my belt and felt like I haven’t played football in ages.”

“We are fighting to win the league and I am more than happy to just be part of the squad but I will push myself and hopefully impress Mark more in training and be rewarded with more game time.”

SWPL2: Forfar Farmington 3 Heart of Midlothian 1

Forfar Farmington continued their excellent home form with a 3-1 win over Heart of Midlothian on Sunday in the Scottish Women’s Premier League Two.

Erin Cattanach’s first competitive goal for the club opened the scoring with Nicola Davidson scoring a fantastic double to seal the win despite Stacey Hutchison’s consolation for Hearts.

Keeper Chantelle McKay and Alison Debio replaced Fiona McNicoll and Kirsty Deans in the only changes from last week’s win over Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale.

This was McKay’s Premier League debut for the club with the 20 year old acquitting herself well and was unlucky to concede.

Gemma Collier had the first effort seven minutes in when she headed a Nicola Davidson free kick wide of the mark.

Hearts started to settle following this and came close themselves through corners from Kara Kidd; Stacey Hutchison and Louise Moultray failing to keep their headers down.

The deadlock was broken in the 24th minute when Julia Scott’s cross was deflected into the path of Erin Cattanach who volleyed home at the back post for her first senior goal for the club.

Danni McGinley fired straight at the keeper fourteen minutes later before Davidson saw a smart volley held.

The lead was doubled on the stroke of half time; great work from Cheryl Kilcoyne led to a cross finding McGinley inside the box but her header hit the post and Robyn Smith forced the ball to Nicola Davidson to blast home from twelve yards.

Gemma Collier had to look sharp to clear a free kick off the line early in the second half while at the other end Scott fired into Ashley Watson’s arms.

Davidson added a third just after the hour mark when she stepped up to send a trademark free kick into the top corner from 25 yards.

Hearts pulled a goal back almost instantly; Stacey Hutchison slipping the ball past the advancing McKay after Ashley Carse’s cross wasn’t cleared.

Robyn Smith hit the woodwork as the game progressed into the final stages; running onto a McGinley through ball before hitting the far post from a tight angle.

The result keeps Farmington six points ahead at the top of the league with Mark Nisbet’s squad in Scottish Cup duty this Sunday as they host Buchan.

Forfar Farmington: Chantelle McKay, Gemma Collier, Erin Cattanach, Robyn Smith, Nicola Davidson, Alana Bruce, Cheryl Kilcoyne (Leah White 72), Megan McCarthy, Julia Scott (Kayleigh Noble 79), Alison Debio (Beth Shillitto 55), Danni McGinley (Laura Parsley 83)

Subs not used: Kirsty Deans, Kayleigh Brough, Oliwia Gach (gk)

Heart of Midlothian: Ashley Watson, Louise Moultray, Megan Paterson, Jennifer Smith, Courtney McAvoy (Claire Delworth 72), Kara Kidd, Ashley Carse, Kazya Stevens (Jen Dodds 63), Lynsay Anderson-Miller, Danni Pagliarulo, Stacey Hutchison

SWPL2: Forfar Farmington 3 Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale 0

Forfar Farmington returned to winning ways with a 3-0 win over Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale as the Scottish Women’s Premier League Two restarted on Sunday.

A double from Danni McGinley and Gemma Collier’s second half strike sealed all three points as Farmington kept up their six point lead at the top.

Alana Bruce was handed her first start since suffering an injury in February as Alison Debio dropped to the bench in the only change to the side that were defeated by Motherwell before the break.

Youngsters Sophie Young and Chantelle McKay were named on the bench after an impressive first half of the season for the pair.

Danni McGinley had the first opportunity of the game two minutes in when she raced on to a Cheryl Kilcoyne ball before pacing into the box; her shot from a tight angle finding the side netting.

A minute later Julia Scott curled a free kick past the post meanwhile captain Nicola Davidson failed to get her long range effort on target.

The visitors’ first shot of the game came through Nichola Sturrock in the 12th minute; the attacker volleying over from Lisa MacFarlane’s free kick.

Three minutes later Farmington were ahead; a long ball looked to be covered by the EUHV keeper or defender, however both player hesitated and McGinley nipped in to send a beautiful lob into the empty net from 25 yards.

Kirsty Deans headed wide shortly after with Megan McCarthy doing the same from a Scott corner in the 27th minute.

Deans and Alana Bruce had efforts on target with Scott coming closest in the 38th minute as her cross-cum-shot was touched wide by the keeper.

From the corner Gemma Collier headed over while Deans fired over from another corner on the stroke on half time.

Farmington seemed to be on top at half time and this was much the case in the second half despite EUHV improving.

McGinley grabbed her and Farmington’s second in the 54th minute; the opposition defence stood still as she raced past them to send a bullet header past Lessells from Scott’s corner for her fifth goal in five games.

Defender Gemma Collier added to the tally just after the hour mark as another Scott corner was taken down by McCarthy and Collier scooped the ball towards goal. After hitting the post, it trickled along the line before going in via the other post.

Chances were few and far between following this with sub Kayleigh Noble and Deans having efforts held in the final ten minutes.

The visitors’ Beth MacLeod saw her curling effort held by Fiona McNicoll before Noble couldn’t keep her effort on target in the final chance of the match.

Farmington keep their six point lead ahead of next week’s tough challenge against Hearts.

Forfar Farmington: Fiona McNicoll, Gemma Collier, Erin Cattanach, Robyn Smith (Kayleigh Noble 66), Nicola Davidson (Alison Debio 77), Alana Bruce, Kirsty Deans, Cheryl Kilcoyne (Laura Parsley 81), Megan McCarthy, Julia Scott (Beth Shillitto 66), Danni McGinley (Sophie Young 81)

Subs not used: Leah White, Chantelle McKay (gk)

Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale: Charlene Lessells, Beth Sutherland, Jude Shepherd, Hannah Craig, Lisa MacFarlane, Anna Murray, Florence Haines, Beth MacLeod, Nichola Sturrock, Leanne Forker (Lynsey Cowan 70), Amy Gilroy (Gillian Flynn 53)

Nisbet Hopes Euros Can Raise Interest In Domestic Game

With Scotland being represented in the European Championships last month, head coach Mark Nisbet hopes it can raise interest in the domestic game.

It was the first time the country was at national tournament since the men were at the World Cup in 1998 and the women were unfortunate not to reach the quarter finals, missing out by one goal.

Nisbet was part of a group of coaches sent to the tournament by the Scottish FA and he praised the set up of the national squads the group watched.

“It was excellent to be at the Euros. It was great to see all the different nations involved and the variety of formations and tactics used in the games. Each nation has a clear model of how they approach each of the games and the players fully respond to that.”

Scotland lost 6-0 to England in their first game and were unlucky to lose to Portugal and despite beating Spain 1-0, they finished third in their group and Nisbet echoed the thoughts of those on social media on the squads fortunes.

He said: “In the end Scotland were really unfortunate not to go through. It was always going to be tough in the opening game against England but to concede six was a disappointing start. I felt that we should have beaten Portugal if we were a bit more clinical in front of goal.”

The Forfar Farmington head coach feels the competition can entice people to head along to their local women’s side with the standard improving every year.

“I’d like to think the Euros can entice people to games but we need to make sure the product that people are coming to watch keeps improving. That’s something we have been working hard to improve over the years and think people would be pleasantly surprised if they were to take in a game.”

Forfar Farmington are currently top of the second tier of the Scottish Women’s Premier League with a six point advantage and Nisbet can’t wait to get going as the league restarts this Sunday.

“As much as it’s good to get a break it’s also good to get back to the normal routine and into training and see all the players again.”

“I am happy with where we are at this point in the season. If you had said at the start of the season we would be six points clear going into the second half I would have jumped at the chance to have that.”

The side take on Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale at Station Park on Sunday with a 1.00pm kick off. Admission is £4 for adults while under 16’s enter free of charge. Entrance to the game can be found at the turnstile at the back of the main stand.

Cattanach Eyes Room For Improvement

Erin Cattanach is loving her first full season in the Scottish Women’s Premier League and believes there is still more to come from Forfar Farmington.

The defender has played ten games so far this season and has been part of a defence that has kept six clean sheets in thirteen games, conceding twelve in that time.

Farmington enter the second half of the season six points ahead of nearest challengers Motherwell at the top of the SWPL2 with Cattanach eager to build on the progress made so far.

She said: “I think that the first half of the season has gone well as we’re top of the league and have played well to maintain this position. I think it has gone according to plan as we have been consistent.”

19 year old Cattanach moved to the senior squad midway through the 2016 season, making six appearances in a season that saw Forfar relegated from the top tier of the Premier League. The young defender reckons she is starting to feel like she has earned her spot in the squad.

“I’m loving it as I’m starting and feel like I have earned my place within the team. I’m really enjoying this season as it’s been a challenge and I have enjoyed pushing myself at training to give me a boost for the weekends.”

She continued: “I think I have been consistent in my performances as I am now comfortable in my position and am confident when on the ball. I think I have learnt a lot throughout training and take that knowledge into the games with me and its really benefitting my performance.”

In her nine starts and one sub appearance, Farmington have conceded just eight goals when she has been on the field of play and despite the impressive record, she feels there is still room for improvement.

“I think we could have definitely conceded less goals than that as a few goals we gave away were silly, but I think that the overall record is okay. We will try and concede less goals in the second part of the season.”

Mark Nisbet’s side returned to training recently ahead of the league restarting on August 6th at home to Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale with Cattanach eager to get going again.

“I’m really looking forward to get back playing competitively, I’ve missed it. I’m working really hard to improve my fitness which will really benefit me in games as I can have the edge over opponents. The whole team is buzzing to get back into playing so I feel we will start the second half of the season strongly”.

Shillitto Eager To Build On Progress Made

Beth Shillitto is enjoying her first full senior season at Forfar Farmington and reckons there is an impressive batch of youngsters coming through the ranks at the club.

The 19 year old attacker has made eleven appearances, with seven of those from the bench, and believes she still has room for improvement.

The SWPL2 leaders have lost just once this season, against Motherwell last month, but Shillitto has been delighted with the side’s performances so far.

She said: “I think the year has gone great so far, the side have played extremely well, with some ups and downs of course but overall I think it’s been great especially with only losing one game so far.”

Shillitto progressed through the youth system, making her senior debut last season at Glasgow City in August. Having made twenty appearances overall since then, she feels she is enjoying herself but admits there is space to improve and wants to prove herself to head coach Mark Nisbet.

“I am thoroughly enjoying being part of the SWPL matchday squads. Yes, it’s harder, but it is worth it. I am hoping to start more often by proving myself to Mark, but overall being with the team and travelling with the team is great fun and a great experience.”

She continued: “Personally, I think I have played well but there is definitely room for improvement. I feel I need to be more composed on the ball, but apart from that I feel I am getting on well.”

The attacker is one of a number of youngsters who have made debuts over the last twelve months and Beth believes they are making great strides in their progress.

“With the young ones coming up and making their debut I feel they are gaining confidence and having the experience that I’m sure they loved. I feel the young ones are progressing greatly through the youth ranks and are proving they can play at SWPL level.”

The side have had some time off as the league has an extended mid-season break due to Scotland qualifying for the Euros. Training resumes this week with the first fixture not until August 6th at home to Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale and Shillitto is eager to get going on the training pitch once again.

“Having two weeks out of training has been good to relax the muscles but I am looking forward to getting back to training with all the girls and working hard as we usually do.”

Debio Pleased With Progress Made In Midfield Role

With Forfar Farmington sitting six points clear at the top of the Scottish Women’s Premier League Two table, Alison Debio is pleased with how her first season at Premier League level has gone so far.

The 20 year old has been almost ever present so far in the first half of the season and the former Cumbernauld Colts player admits she is enjoying the challenges faced while playing in midfield.

Farmington have lost just once in the league, winning nine of the other ten games while drawing the other and although the loss reduced the lead at the top, Debio reckons it is still a good position to be in during the summer break.

She said: “The first half of the season has been a good learning experience. We have pushed forward and been developing as a team which has created a great environment that has produced a lot of positive performances.”

“If we were offered being 6 points clear come the halfway point we would have gladly accepted it at the start of the season.”

Despite the lead, the midfielder is under no illusions that the side will have to work hard in every game with other teams looking to take a scalp against the league leaders.

“We knew the teams in this league would all pose different problems that we would have to overcome and we have done very well to deal with some difficult opponents.”

She continued: “The obstacles that we have overcome have also highlighted areas for us to work on which is always good to ensure we stay at the top. Now we have played everyone at least once we definitely have a target on our heads and we are the team everyone wants to beat.”

Debio had previously played as a defender prior to her move to the club, moving forward to midfield at the start of the season. She expressed an eagerness to progress in her position having started all but one game this season.

“I feel that I definitely understand my role a lot more and I enjoy the different challenges that we face in there, it keeps you on your toes. I may have started a lot of games but every start is an honour and each game highlights areas that need work, this ultimately pushes me to become a better player and offer more to the team.”

The former Falkirk and Stenhousemuir youth reckons her battling, no-nonsense style of play has helped her settle in her new role, even if it means collecting a few bumps and bruises along the way.

“I’ve always been the type of player who puts their all in and if it means I pick up a few knocks here and there then that’s okay with me. Whilst the team keeps progressing positively I’ll continue to work hard and carry out my role to the best of my ability when called upon.”

Debio continued: “For a team to work there needs to be balance across the pitch and I feel like on a whole our squad is very well balanced and we have lots of options to call upon.”

Farmington were drawn against fellow SWPL2 outfit Buchan in the third round of the Scottish Cup and despite defeating the Aberdeenshire side 4-0 twice this season, Debio reckons it will be a tough game regardless of the previous results.

“Playing against a team we have already played twice this season is obviously a good draw as we know how they play and how we can overcome the obstacles they throw at us. Having said that, I feel like we are equipped to deal with any challenge thrown at us.”

McGinley Enjoying New Start At Station Park

Attacker Danni McGinley is delighted to have gotten off to a fantastic start at Forfar Farmington but admits it was disappointing to lose their first league game this season.

Despite goals from McGinley and Robyn Smith, Farmington lost in the league for the first time since October last year with their lead at the top of the Scottish Women’s Premier League cut to six points.

22 year old McGinley felt the side started off well and had the lion’s share of chances but lamented their failure to capitalise on this.

She said: “I think we started well getting the early goal but then lost a bit of tempo throughout the first half, and let Motherwell have too much time on the ball. Overall I think we dominated the majority of the game but failed to take our chances and were punished as a result. We limited Motherwell to three chances and to their credit they took them all.”

The attacker opened the scoring after just two minutes with a volley from close range while setting up the second for Robyn Smith in a reversal of the first.

“As a striker I’m always happy to be on the scoresheet, Robyn played a good ball in and I knew I just needed to get in front of my player and get something on it and it would go in.”

Since returning to Forfar at the start of the month, McGinley has netted three goals in four games, notching three assists at the same time. The former Jeanfield Swifts forward reckons she has picked up her teammates’ style of play quickly and is over the moon with her efforts so far.

“I’m happy with my contributions so far, I think I’ve gotten to know and understand the way the team plays quickly and that has helped me with picking up goals and assists.”

McGinley also admits it feels like she was never away from the club and praised those involved on and off the pitch. The league now heads into the summer break however she is already eager to get going with the second half of the season.

“It’s great to be back and everyone has been so welcoming, it almost feels like I was never away at times. I already feel fitter in myself, and I’m looking forward to the second half of the season as I feel like the team still have much more to give.”