Hutchie Vale ladies have nothing to lose in derby

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Hutchison VALE boss Ian MacDonald believes victory over Hibernian Ladies in this weekend’s Edinburgh derby could be the springboard to a promising season for his side.

After consolidating their position in the Scottish Women’s Premier League last term Hutchie are eager to push on again this year and started the new campaign with a 5-2 victory over Kilmarnock last weekend.

Now he is targeting another three points – this time against city rivals Hibs at Saughton Park (kick-off 2.00pm).

“It will be a very tough game for the girls but we are all looking forward to it,” commented MacDonald, acknowledging the difficult task facing his girls.

“Hibs will certainly start the match as the overwhelming favourites to win however we have nothing to lose because no one expects us to take anything.

“We go into the game as the underdog knowing that we gave a good account of ourselves the last time we played them.

“We expect Hibs to have more of the ball and to cause us problems because they are technically better, however both teams are suited to playing good football.

“Teams such as Hibs are the benchmark for our young squad. Yes, we can match them in one-off games but they will perform to a high level consistently and that’s where we want to be.

“If we can take something from this match it would be a terrific achievement and the confidence gained from it could prove a great platform for the rest of the season.

“We created a lot of chances last weekend against Killie but know there will be fewer opportunities against Hibs and we have to be ruthless in front of goal to take anything from the game.”

Hibs coach Willie Kirk is well aware of the threat posed by MacDonald’s side and knows his team must guard against complacency.

He said: “I was impressed with Hutchie last season and they will have undoubtedly learnt a lot from their first year in the SWPL.

“It will be a tough game.  They are well-organised and have a number of dangerous individuals that can cause us problems.”

Elsewhere, Spartans travel along the M8 to face Celtic at Lennoxtown (kick-off 4.00pm) aiming to build on last weekend’s impressive 11-1 victory over Falkirk.