Women’s football: Hearts may take direct route

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HEARTS WOMEN boss Kevin Milne believes his side may have to be more direct this term as they adjust to life in Scotland’s top flight.

The Jambos were given an early wake-up call of the challenges facing them this season when they were thumped 8-0 by Celtic in the opening round of the SWPL Cup two weeks ago.

Ahead of tomorrow’s SWPL opener against Aberdeen at Sunnybank Juniors, Aberdeen (kick-off 1pm), Milne has admitted he’s considering adjusting his passing philosophy.

“The Celtic match was a difficult afternoon for everyone,” commented boss Milne, “We have strong characters in our squad and they won’t allow their heads to drop.

“We are just finding our feet playing at a higher level and, once we have adjusted, we will challenge more.

“Celtic was a steep learning curve for our side – myself included – but we have watched the game back and worked on areas we can improve on.

“Playing in the lower divisions, you have more time on the ball and we may change our shape to go a bit more direct. I still want us to play attractive football but we will need to be more incisive.

“Starting the league campaign away at Aberdeen is a tough fixture but it is one we can definitely take something from.

“They are a good side and I was really impressed by them when I saw them in pre-season against Hibs.”

Elsewhere, Spartans aim to build on their League Cup victory over Rangers by taking three points from their opening league fixture against Forfar Farmington at Ainslie Park (kick-off 1pm).

Spartans manager Debbi McCulloch insists her side can’t afford to take the visitors lightly, saying: “They had a good result the other week against Hutchie and they will have taken confidence from it.

“Our girls are flying just now on the back of the Rangers game but we know from last season Forfar can be a threat and we will take that into account.

“It’s been a long pre-season campaign and we are all looking forward to the serious action getting underway tomorrow.”

Meanwhile, Hibs Ladies and Celtic recommence the battle of the greens when the pair clash at K-Park Training Academy, East Kilbride (kick-off 2pm), while Hutchison Vale face a difficult opening weekend as they host champions Glasgow City at Saughton Enclosure (kick-off 2pm).