SWPL: an unknown ambiance on the daybreak of the 2022-23 season

Rangers completed final season seven factors away from Glasgow Metropolis by successful their first ever ladies’s title
Place: Broadwood Stadium, Cumbernauld Date: Sunday 7 August Time: 16:00 BST
Protection: Watch dwell on the BBC Sport web site, app and iPlayer. Highlights of all SWPL matches on BBC Scotland on Monday at 7pm

The duct tape of England’s Euro 2022 celebrations has simply been cleaned up, but the brand new season of the Scottish Ladies’s Premier League is already upon us.

Whereas ladies’s soccer north of the border is hoped to profit from the ripple impact of the primary English league win, the league is embracing a brand new period.

After 14 seasons on the prime, Glasgow Metropolis have been dethroned, with Rangers in unknown territory being defending champions.

Each golf equipment will probably be seeking to attain the promised land of the Champions League group stage, whereas Celtic goal to do higher than final season’s double.

All of that is performed out on a brand new panorama, with the SWPL having moved to the Scottish Skilled Soccer League.

BBC Scotland takes a take a look at what to maintain a watch out for as a brand new season kicks off on Sunday.

A brand new period

The SWPL is now beneath the auspices of the SPFL, which runs the boys’s senior sport.

SWPL1 may have a 12-team prime flight from this season, with SWPL2 increasing to eight. The highest flight will cut up after 22 video games and groups will play groups of their half desk twice.

SPFL Chief Govt Neil Doncaster praised “the golf equipment’ ambition to boost the bar, take the sport to the subsequent degree and improve participation.”

And Fiona McIntyre, who was named CEO of SWPL in July, says a change in governance for the primary two tiers ought to “speed up” the transition to full-time skilled soccer.

“We wish the highest flight to grow to be a full-time skilled league,” mentioned McIntyre.

Priscilla Chinchilla of Glasgow City (right) and Megyu Shen of the Celtics
Celtic got here out on prime towards Glasgow Metropolis in each nationwide finals final season

Who will win the championship?

Rangers gained the championship for the primary time of their historical past final season; ending seven factors behind Metropolis, with Celtic 10 behind.

It was one other summer season of change for Malky Thomson’s workforce. They’ve handed the Rangers coaching middle the place their house video games had been enjoying and as an alternative will transfer to Broadwood Stadium to satisfy the demand of these wishing to buy season tickets.

They aren’t the one ones to alter stadiums: Hibernian is returning to Edinburgh after a stint in Livingston, with the brand new Meadowbank Stadium opening its doorways to them.

Rangers have additionally been busy within the switch market. Brianna Westrup, Kirsten Reilly and Chantelle Swaby moved on, however the squad was considerably strengthened with goalkeeper Victoria Esson and striker Dina Orschmann shifting from the German Bundesliga.

Additionally on the best way are Finnish midfielder Jenny Danielsson, Scottish youth defender Kathryn Hill, French defender Lisa Martinez and maybe the very best of the bunch, midfielder Colette Cavanagh, who was Hibs’ star.

Rangers have already scored a scorer, beating Celtic 2-1 within the first version of the Metropolis of Glasgow Ladies’s Cup. But it surely got here at a value, with the lack of Scottish striker Jane Ross to a cruciate ligament harm.

Celtic and Glasgow Metropolis are more likely to be their greatest challengers. Metropolis have gone international once more with their signings: Mexican ahead Desiree Monsivais, US defender Erin Greening, New Zealand defender Meikayla Moore and Turkish midfielder Dilan Bora all headed to Petershill Park.

Celtic surprisingly weren’t that busy. Shen Menglu, Amy Gallacher, Liv Fergusson and Lucy Ashworth Clifford checked in, whereas defenders Cheyenne Shorts and Jodie Bartle took off.

However after successful the nationwide cup double final season, and with key quartet Jacynta, Chloe Craig, Caitlin Hayes and Kelly Clark signing new offers this summer season, supervisor Fran Alonso clearly believes he has the foundations for a workforce able to take the massive one.

Can Scotland make its mark in Europe?

In August, two groups as soon as once more attempt to make their manner into Champions League qualifiers.

It is the Rangers’ first stab and so they have a visit into the sweltering warmth of Greece for his or her four-team mini-tournament.

First they face Hungarian Ferencvaros and, in the event that they win, await the winners of the PAOK hosts’ match towards Swansea Metropolis.

For Glasgow Metropolis, they’ve an enormous job towards Serie A giants Roma. Win towards their illustrious rivals and have a possible rematch towards Swiss aspect Servette – who knocked them out final season – or Paris FC.

What Eileen Gleeson’s aspect have of their favor is their house benefit, as Metropolis will host their very own mini-tournament.

Ought to both Scottish aspect overcome the primary hurdle, they are going to face a double draw within the second qualifying spherical, with the winners advancing to the 16-team group stage beginning in October.

Can anybody exterior of Glasgow win silverware?

Hibs v Hearts at Easter Road
An general crowd of 9,020 spectators attended the 2 Edinburgh derbies held at Easter Street and Tynecastle final season

Hibernian will, as all the time, be intriguing. Fourth season final, this summer season they introduced full-time contracts to the gamers that ought to, on paper, make them extra aggressive towards the three Glasgow groups that completed above them.

Having misplaced Cavanagh and Gallacher on either side of the Previous Agency, whereas the influential Rachael Boyle is out of motion this season awaiting the start of her second youngster, there are holes within the workforce to fill.

However they tried to unravel the issue with Swedish striker Nor Mustafa, Norwegian goalkeeper Benedicte Haland and Lucy Parry, on mortgage from Liverpool, amongst these arriving in Leith.

Aberdeen impressed after promotion by ending within the first half of the desk, though solely defender Eirinn McCafferty was added, with co-managers Emma Hunter and Gavin Beith seeking to their youth system as an alternative.

Hearts, after a transitional season beneath Spain’s Eva Olid, moved right into a semi-professional set-up, with key additions equivalent to former Hibee Emma Brownlie and New Zealander Katie Rood. Their semi-professional standing follows the same announcement from rivals Edinburgh Spartans.

Motherwell strengthened with Emily Mutch, Brogan Anderson and Lucy Ronald, all extraordinary of their former golf equipment.

Dundee United and Glasgow Ladies – who will face Rangers of their first sport on Sunday – are the promoted groups and face a baptism of fireside within the prime flight.

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