It’s League Cup Semi-Final day on Sunday with Recreation Park, Alloa set to host both matches as Celtic take on Hibernian and Aberdeen face Glasgow City with all sides looking to take one step closer to the first silverware of the season.
Aberdeen defeated three times finalists Spartans to reach this stage, but Dons boss Allan Smith knows his side need to claim an even bigger scalp if they are to make the their first final for some time. He said, “We are under no illusions as to how tough a test this will be. The current Cup holders’ (Glasgow City) squad is lined with internationalists and combine a wealth of experience with some very talented youngsters. We have huge respect for Glasgow City and the standards they set in Scottish Women’s Football.
“With this said, we appreciate we are the underdogs, however come into the match fully prepared and in decent form. We will be without two key players for the match with Melissa Aitkenhead and Susan Murray both missing. They have been outstanding for us in defence this season, yet the strength and depth of the squad this year is extremely promising and we will be giving it our all to reach the final.”
City boss Eddie Wolecki Black knows his team are favourites, but having faced a gritty Aberdeen in the League only a few days ago, is well aware Sunday will be just as tough. He said, “We won 2-0 last Sunday, but that game means nothing now. Over the past few seasons Aberdeen have made great progress as a club and having finished in the top half of the table for the past two seasons are now generally regarded as a top six team. Therefore they have experienced the challenge of playing the top clubs regularly over the past few years and will be keen to put up a stern challenge. As for ourselves we will approach the tie in the same manner as always and that is with the utmost respect for our rivals. We will stay true to our style of play and look to dominate the ball. We fully expect Aberdeen to be compact, determined and playing for quick counters. I am sure the contrasting styles will make for an exciting game for all concerned.”
In the other semi-final Hibernian take on Celtic and like City, faced their opponents only last week in the League. Hibs won 1-0 on that occasion and HIbs boss Willie Kirk is confident of an another attractive and competitive encounter. He said, “Our semi-final game sees two very talented and progressive teams face each other, in what I believe will be a very entertaining match. We know that Celtic are a tough side as always to crack and I see them as one of the favourites for every competition this year.
“I managed to watch them a few weeks ago and we obviously faced each other last Sunday so we know their game and style fairly well, so don’t expect too many surprises in their line up or tactics.
“We have had a fairly good start to the season, and we have managed that by working hard every week on the training pitch and continuing our own development as a team. We will be focusing on our game and if we play to our potential and work very hard, we will give ourselves a chance of progressing to the first final of the season.”
SWPL Cup Semi-Finals
Sunday 11 May 2014
Recreation Park, Alloa
Celtic v Hibernian (Kick-off: 12 noon)
Aberdeen v Glasgow City (Kick-off: 3 pm)
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