Category: SWPL Team News

“Best days of your life”

Today marks a significant moment in the history of Forfar Farmington as two stalwarts of the club play their final games as they bid farewell to the SWPL team having amassed over 1,200 games between them over a near 29 year period, which must be a record in the women’s game!

We caught up with Club Captain Nicola Davidson and her long time team-mate & friend Alana Bruce as they took part in their final training sessions before their retirement today.

Keen to learn more about their journey with Farmington they shared the following memories and highlights :

Q – what was your earliest memory of playing football?

Nicola – playing with my big sister and brothers then first team memory playing for Dundee West Boys (what a team) then age of ten signing for Forfar Farmington in 1993

Alana – Playing at Martin Park in Kirrie with my cousins Gav and Dougie, before joining Forfar Farmington in 1992

Q- What have been your career highlights as individuals and as part of team?

Nicola –

  • I have many great highlights one at age of 12 being the only female player out of 16 international teams playing in the FIFA Fair Play Tournament in France – I got a nice gift and funny moment when one of the team managers approached my mum and asked to buy me!
  • U13’s for Forfar can I just say what a team, we had to play 3 games in the one day to win the league and to celebrate we done a Klinsmann through the biggest puddle.
  • Being part of the Farmington exchange twice and meeting some awesome people and on my second trip getting joint player of the trip with Avril. 
  • Another highlight has to be finishing second in the league and being in a Scottish cup final against Glasgow City where we just lost out 1-0
  • Being Captain for so many years is obviously an honour as well!

Alana – 

  • As an individual I’d have to say making the full National team. I was in the squads since I was15 so 1997 till 2003, 16’s, 18’s and A squad. 
  • With Farmington it would be the session we were second in the league and Scottish cup finalists running Glasgow City close

Q – Best player played with and against?

Nicola – Too many to name – I’ve had the privilege of playing with some very talented players. 

  • Against – again lots of very good players I’ve shared the pitch with but Suzanne Lappin, Leanne Crichton and Fara Williams.

Alana – Nicola Davidson  /     Fara Williams

Q – Sure we know the answer to this but what will you miss the most when you retire?

Nicola – I will miss playing for sure miss seeing everyone and especially the changing room banter

Alana – The banter with the girls! 

Q – What pieces of advice would you give to the young players at Farmington who look up to you?

Nicola – Train hard, play hard, learn & listen to your peers, be coachable but most importantly have the best time and cherish every moment!

Alana – Train hard, play hard and enjoy every minute of your Farmington days! They will be some of THE best days of your life!

Whilst Alana & Nicola are departing the 1st team scene we certainly hope to see them around the club as role models for the next generation of players coming through. The committee, coaches, team mates, parents and every other player at the club thanks them both immensely for their undying commitment to the club over the years and wish them all the very best for the future! 

They are pictured receiving momentos from Club President Colin Brown to mark their 600+ appearances and we will be having a further presentation at the Clubhouse on Tuesday evening this week.

Summer Christie arrives on loan

Forfar Farmington have added to their squad ahead of a busy run-in of games with Summer Christie arriving at Forfar until the end of the season from Celtic.

Christie is a midfielder and played a full game in last night’s 1-0 defeat to Motherwell with a trialist appearance in the 2nd half against Hibernian on Sunday.

The midfielder is looking at the move to Farmington to play in a competitive environment with the abundance of talent that there is in the SWPL1, “I am looking to get some minutes here at Forfar & it’s a great opportunity for me.

“We play against some of the top teams in the league including Rangers & Glasgow City and it’s a real challenge for me & the team, it’s a good team and a good set-up here at Forfar.

“Kevin has been great with me since I’ve came into the door, hopefully this move benefits both Forfar & Celtic.

On the game last night against Motherwell, Christie said, “It was a disappointing defeat for the Girls but I enjoyed it out there.

“Donna Paterson in particular has been great with me since I have came in at Farmington, she keeps me right and is an experienced player in this league.

“I’m really glad to get the challenge here at Forfar and we have some challenging games coming up, I am travelling up continuously from Larbert but this is a great opportunity and playing games is what I want to be doing.”

Club Statement : Leontia McVarnock

We are disappointed to see Leontia leave Scotland to return home after a long 4 months for her, waiting on the green light which never came due to errors at SFA Registrations department.  It is very frustrating when clubs such as ours with voluntary staff all doing a very good job in making sure the correct paperwork is submitted on time to the relevant bodies however this was not followed up. 

Our request was made on the 10th December ahead of the transfer window but not processed even after many attempts to chase this up with Sandy Bryson Head of SFA Registrations department at the time, including resending relevant copies of documents.  A request was then made by SFA for special dispensation on the transfer given all clubs and associations were in support of this however with no success. 

We have since been informed of an oversight by SFA/SWF in that all SWPL clubs did not have access to the TMS (Transfer Matching System) to allow players to transfer freely from FIFA member Associations, in this case was IFA to SFA.

Leontia arrived after we had the green light to return to football in March having been told her case was being dealt with and just waiting on the confirmation.  At this point we could have been told it wasn’t going to happen as the window had closed but were led to believe as she was an amateur player then this window didn’t apply, however not the case as Leontia required International Clearance.  The club have progressed this matter personally with FIFA to see what needed to be done by SFA to progress her application through the system, having the support of SWF, and all 7 SWPL clubs, this support was much appreciated.

It seemed the only way to resolve the error made by SFA was to revert the status of the league to amateur, but this has not been agreed due to other factors involved.  We therefore say farewell to Leontia while we continue to follow up the appeal process taking this as far as we can for her.  We do hope we may see her return for the new season given we can perhaps have better success with the process for a second time, giving her the chance to gain the experience she is desperate to have within SWPL1.  

We wish her well as she returns to Ireland and to see her part of the squad in the future.

White praises the youth ethos at the club

Leah White is a player & coach known by many around FClub circles & the left back certainly knows her way around the youth corridor into the Premier Team at Forfar Farmington. 

White came through the youth system at the club before joining the Prem Team tasting success back in 2017 winning the SWPL2 title. 

The left back has struggled with game time of late & was happy to be given the chance last week by head coach Kevin McGreskin, she looks ahead to tomorrow’s televised game with Glasgow City by saying. 

“It’s going to be a hard game but we’re up for it and have been training hard, if we can get something then it would be great, hopefully we can build on her performance. 

“Glasgow City are good & pacy with the ball and are always dangerous, we will focus on ourselves though and we are looking to make a good account of ourselves. 

“Kevin has been brilliant with myself & the players, he fits in great with the team and is a great coach, he demands standards from players. 

“I struggled for game time last season, and I was happy to get a start with the resumption of competitive football last week, hopefully I can build on this and help the team out as much as I can. 

“There is a family ethos about this club and we are like a family, I know everyone says it but it really is, we get on well together. When we are enjoying good moments like we did last week & being successful then it’s always positive. 

Charlotte Taylor, Alix Saddler, Rachel Neave & Zoe Bruce were in the squad last week for the 3-2 victory over Motherwell with White dedicating last week’s victory to the work that gets done behind the scenes to the youth development programme at the club. 

White added, “The junior set-up at the club is good, it’s great when players come into the Prem Team and also stick around with the club for a very long time which has been proven in the past. 

“Players like Alix, Rachel, Zoe, Charlotte & Beth Mowatt (GK) have been through the youth development pathway before making the step-up to the Prem Team. 

“Young players look up to players like myself when we are taking sessions, with more media coverage and attention towards the women’s game, it will only help the pathway moving forward.

“The message to the young players is stick in & work hard, you don’t always get to play 90 minutes but opportunities will come when you get them, you just have to believe in yourself.”

Three 1st half goals see Farmington defeated at Hibs

Hibernian did their business in the 1st half overcoming Forfar Farmington 3-0 at Ainslie Park, the hosts deserved their victory with a dominant 15-20 spell from Hibs was enough for the hosts to get all 3 points & get the outcome they desired. 

Dean Gibson’s side showed their intent straight from the off trying to create openings from the word go in the aim of breaking up the Farmington defence, on 6 minutes, Ellis Notley had an effort from 30 yards which went wide of the left post. 

Hibs took the lead on 15 minutes, a corner came in from the right side which wasn’t dealt with properly by the Farmington backline and there was Leah Eddie 18 yards from goal who guided the ball into the bottom right hand corner beyond Perry. 

Siobhan Hunter made it 2-0 to the hosts shortly after getting on the end of a lovely cross to jump above London Pollard & Donna Paterson to guide the ball into the net past Perry who enjoyed a good afternoon in goals making some good stops despite coming out on the losing end. 

A speculative effort by Carla Boyce on 28 minutes completed the scoring with her effort rocketing into the top right hand corner from distance past Perry, Farmington were struggling to adapt & a break couldn’t come quick enough for the visitors. 

Farmington captain Cassie Cowper had a few stern words with her team-mates after the 3rd goal went in & it brought to an extent a response, there was more of a desire to get forward & strive to get a goal, Cowper found Erin Rennie with the midfielder keen to get on the scoresheet but her effort went wide of Emily Mutch’s goal. 

Half Time – Hibernian 3-0 Forfar Farmington

Forfar Farmington Gaffer Ryan McConville alongside the rest of the coaching staff used the interval to sort a few things out & it brought more stability at the back in the 2nd period. 

The changes then came thick & fast with Molly-May Ramsay, Eirinn McCafferty, Leah White & Cheryl Kilcoyne all coming on alongside our Number 10 Nicola Davidson. What a pity that we couldn’t get supporters into the ground to see the return of a Farmington stalwart in Nicola Davidson. 

All subs brought a different approach to the game, especially Eirinn McCafferty always looking to get on the ball & pose a threat to the Hibs defence, she had an effort midway through the 2nd half go wide. 

Davidson used her experience to control proceedings in midfield & her replacement Donna Paterson also did well alongside Kathryn Pender before the latter was also replaced by McCafferty. 

London Pollard had a quieter afternoon than usual however still gave Hibs some problems, with time running out in the game, she did very well to get past Charlotte Potts showing some excellent skill before finding McCafferty who fired wide. 

Cheryl Kilcoyne has found game-time hard to come by so far this season however the Farmington favourite gave 100% for the cause and almost scored a fantastic goal with a long range strike which Mutch had to tip onto the bar before the rebound by Nicola Davidson was caught offside. 

A defeat is always tough however the 2nd half performance deserves praise for a more defensive organisation against a side of Hibs’s quality. Well done to Hibs on the win who picked up all 3 points after a tough period without a result recently. 

Great to see our Number 10 Nicola Davidson back on the park after a curtailed period out with injury, a real stalwart of Forfar Farmington Football Club. 

Forfar Farmington: Lauren Perry, Lisa Ryan (76 Leah White), Kirsty Fraser, Jade Lindsay, Alana Bruce, Cassie Cowper, (76 Cheryl Kilcoyne), Donna Paterson (68 Nicola Davidson), Kathryn Pender (58 Eirinn McCafferty), Erin Rennie, Charlotte Gammie (58 Molly-May Ramsay), London Pollard: Subs not used: Annalisa McCann, Billie Simpson


McConville: We have the underdog tag again

Forfar Farmington Gaffer admits that Farmington once again have the underdog tag again in tomorrow’s match against Rangers however admits that he & his players have to embrace it all. 

McConville said, “It will be a difficult game, there is no hiding place that the investment put in by Rangers for the women’s programme has been a high profile & have recruited some quality players. 

“We have the underdog tag again which we can accept however I want us to give a good account of ourselves, Rangers in both mens & womens carries a big name, reputation & history. The mens team have been successful over the decades & the womens team are now trying to emulate that. 

“Heart & desire costs nothing & you will see that from our women tomorrow, Rangers will be hurting after the 1-0 defeat to Celtic, they will look to bounce back straight away. 

“For us, it was a sore one last week & was disappointing, we have to understand we are a small club & scraping for every point possible, Lauren Perry had a nasty facial injury with 8 stitches across her head & 2 black eyes & misses out. 

“Fiona McNicoll is a proven goalkeeper in this league and will be an asset for us tomorrow.”

McGreskin: Proud of the players

Forfar Farmington assistant coach Kevin McGreskin admitted after the game that he’s proud of his players despite the 8-1 loss to Glasgow City. Farmington played well for the majority of the game & competed with City for the opening 40 minutes until Scott Booth’s side playing some free flowing football which led to the more superior outcome from their point of view. 

McGreskin said, “To be fair, the players worked really hard & put in a really good shift against a top outfit in Glasgow City who have a host of international players in their squad & been league champions for the last 13 years. 

“I felt our players made them work hard enough during the game but with them having more fitness & sharpness it told in the end, there at the top of the tree in Scottish Women’s football. 

“We are proud of the players as they put in a good performance against a top side, we created good opportunities & a few half chances & Fiona McNicoll made some great saves in the 2nd half at the other end, it might sound silly after an 8-1 defeat however the players played well. 

“I wouldn’t say we capitulated as we competed really well, it was a mad spell a few minutes before half time conceding 2 goals which puts a different complexion on the game. On the whole, Glasgow City were just able to take advantage of extra half yards in terms of movement & sharpness. 

“Donna Paterson has been in great form for us, we worked on a few set-pieces & was unlucky not to add another goal in the 2nd half.” 

City beat spirited Farmington 8-1

Glasgow City maintained their fine start to the season with an 8-1 win over a motivated & enthusiastic Forfar Farmington side who were hit by sucker punches regarding goals in periods of the game however the competitiveness was definitely showcased at a windy Broadwood Stadium this afternoon. 

Forfar Farmington head coach Ryan McConville made 2 changes to the win over Motherwell with Alana Bruce & Fiona McNicoll coming in for Jade Lindsay & Lauren Perry. 

Glasgow City took the lead on 11 minutes when Zaneta Wyne’s cross was parried by Fiona McNicoll & there was Kirsty Howat to bundle home into an empty net from 4 yards out. 

Forfar Farmington levelled on 19 minutes, a fantastic free kick by Cassie Cowper was met by Donna Paterson who headed home a fine effort into the bottom left hand corner beyond Erin Clachers. Farmington had been losing at this moment in time possession wise however they were organised & got an equaliser which they worked hard for. 

A thunderous strike from Rachel McLaughlan made it 2-1 to Glasgow City finding the bottom left hand corner past McNicoll from 30 yards out, Kirsty Howat then got her 2nd of the game after McNicoll lost control of the ball & there was Howat to put the ball into the net. 

Jo Love showed her experience in this game once again & made it 4-1 with 9 minutes before half time turning Kirsty Fraser before keeping her composure to slot into the net. 

Half Time – Glasgow City 4-1 Forfar Farmington

2nd half

Glasgow City added a 5th with Aoife Colvill finding the bottom corner with a good finish before a 6th followed soon after thanks to a Mairead Fulton header. 

Head Coach McConville brought on Jade Lindsay in place of Billie Simpson with the former adding a new dimension to avoid any hope of serious capitulation. When she came on, she gave Forfar positivity and got into good areas. Aimee Anderson also played well when she came on & gave Forfar something different in attack despite the game being wrapped up by that point. 

Forfar almost pulled one back when a Cassie Cowper ball found London Pollard however the striker pulled the shot over the bar. Glasgow City added a 7th with Leanne Ross sending Fiona McNicoll the wrong way. 

The visitors remained positive on the ball with Anderson giving Glasgow City something to think about, she played a good ball into sub Jade Lindsay however a good save by Erin Clachers denied Lindsay, it was an afternoon in which Farmington could’ve added to their tally however it wasn’t to be. 

Howat then got her hat-trick after a Shannon Wojcik shot wasn’t properly dealt with by the Forfar goalkeeper & there was Howat to seal her hat-trick, from a period in which they competed with City, it was turning into complete capitulation for Forfar however they all gave 100% to the cause which was fantastic for everyone associated with Forfar Farmington Football Club. 

Not the result anyone wanted however everyone played well & that was a big positive for everyone involved, the defeat is a blow however next week at home to Hearts is a great opportunity to bounce back, there was a lot of young players featured & they will learn & develop as a result of this. 

Glasgow City showed their strength & depth & the movement on & off the ball was pleasing from their point of view, Farmington competed for large periods of the 1st half against City & that will be a plus sign for the management team to reflect over. 

Full Time – Glasgow City 8-1 Forfar Farmington

Glasgow City: Clachers, McLauchlan, Wyne, Love, Fulton (Wojcik), Howat, Toland (Crichton), Clark, Ross, Colvill (Davidson), Wade. Subs not used: Alexander, Lauder, Kerr, Foley

Forfar Farmington: McNicoll, Ryan, Cowper, Fraser, Bruce, Simpson (Lindsay), Paterson (Paterson), Rennie (McCafferty), Pollard, Pender (Ramsay), Gammie (Anderson). Subs not used: Perry, White.


Kirsty Fraser: No pressure for City game

Forfar Farmington centre back Kirsty Fraser is one of the new players at the club however has settled into the back-line very well putting in a solid performance a fortnight ago against Motherwell. 

A different assignment follows for Forfar Farmington tomorrow when they take the trip to Broadwood Stadium to face Glasgow City (3pm kick off) who have been a dominant force in Scottish Women’s Football for many years. 

Fraser admits that there is no pressure on Forfar Farmington for the upcoming task against City, “There is no pressure on us to get anything out of the game against Glasgow City, Glasgow City are a good side however we will be going out to perform, play well & give them a good game. 

“There is nothing to fear prior to this game, we had a good result against Motherwell a fortnight ago which will give us momentum heading into the game. 

“It will be a good challenge for us but we know that Glasgow City are talented all over the park, we are capable of doing well & everyone within the club is looking forward to the game.”

“Following the Motherwell win, it gives us that oomph, the game plan went well & the aim is to build around the positivity tomorrow.”

McConville: Glasgow City will be a big challenge

Forfar Farmington got off to the dream start just under a fortnight ago in the SWPL1 Premier League with a 4-2 win over Motherwell. A different assignment follows with a tricky encounter to face Premier League champions Glasgow City who have dominated Scottish Womens football for over a decade. 

Farmington Head Coach Ryan McConville is looking for his players to embrace the challenge against a side of Glasgow City’s calibre on Sunday which is filled with experience & quality all over the park despite upcoming & recent departures from the club. 

McConville said, “We’re playing against the champions from last year who have dominated womens football in this country for a very long time, we are playing against a lot of international players & players with a bit of pedigree. 

“Glasgow City have recruited well despite losing some players, Scott Booth has done a great job with the club who is one of the best managers in the league, it’s a big challenge for the coaches & players. 

“The pressure isn’t on us, it’s important that we perform & give a good account of ourselves but Glasgow City will be favourites to win the game, we’ll be trying to give them difficult hurdles & at the end of the day it’s a David v Goliath task. 

“Sunday will give us that indication of where we’re at, the outcome of the game won’t define the season however we need to try & give it our best shot & be positive.”