Scottish Women’s Football celebrates heroes of the game at ScottishPower SWF Awards ceremony
The great and the good of women’s football in Scotland were celebrated last night in a glittering awards ceremony at the home of football, Hampden Park.
Hosted by former news anchor and BBC presenter Catriona Shearer, the ScottishPower Scottish Women’s Football Awards recognised among others the success of Glasgow City’s dramatic title win, Edinburgh City’s unbeaten League One campaign and Buckie Ladies’ league and cup double in the ScottishPower Highlands and Islands League.
In her address, SWF chair Vivienne Maclaren described 2023 as a “landmark year” for women’s and girls’ football, both internationally and in Scotland.
“Women’s football has fantastic role models and creates a unique matchday experience, and that’s what we are celebrating tonight.
“These awards celebrate the commitment, passion and achievement at every level of the game we all love, including those who can often be overlooked – the work that goes on to keep clubs going, the women who juggle football with work, life and caring responsibilities. The volunteers who provide opportunities for young women to play.”
Glasgow City’s Leanne Ross was named SWF’s SWPL Coach of the Year, with the club’s striker Lauren Davidson SWPL1 Player of the Year, while City goalkeeper Lee Gibson was named ScottishPower International Player of the Year for her exploits with Scotland.
Lauren Davidson (Glasgow City) was MG AlBA SWPL1 Player of the Year and Louise Brown (Montrose) was MG ALBA SWPL2 Player of the Year (Photo by Alex Todd/Sportpix)
In fact, goalkeepers were well represented on the night, with Heart of Midlothian keeper Charlotte Parker-Smith winning the Kat Linder Award for Athletic and Academic Achievement and Buckie Ladies keeper Sophia Golebiewski named MG ALBA Highlands and Islands Player of the Year.
Buckie also picked up the Sunday Post Volunteer of the Year for Laura Duncan for everything she does at the club.
Successful promotion campaigns were recognised for Bonnyrigg Rose coach Jamie Carter, who was named Avia Signs SWFL Coach of the Year, and Queen of the South captain Charlotte Smith, who picked up the SWFL Player of the Year, sponsored by Arran: Sense of Scotland.
SWF’s SWPL 2 Player of the Year was named as Louise Brown of Montrose.
Edinburgh City’s unbeaten League One campaign saw former manager Andy Enwood pick up RJM Championship & League One Coach of the Year and former talisman Deborah McLeod named LNER League One Player of the Year. Ayr United’s Clare Docherty picked up LNER Championship Player of the Year.
In the youth game, Heart of Midlothian’s treble-winning 16s Nap team picked up SHAAP Youth Team of the Year, Musselburgh Windsor’s Samantha Windram was Youth Coach of the Year and the sportscotland Youth Player of the Year was Niamh McCulloch of Hamilton Academical.
In the new category of ScottishPower Sustainable Club of the Year, Dundee club Dryburgh Athletic were recognised.
“Despite operating in a fiercely competitive environment in Dundee, Dryburgh Athletic have maintained a robust pathway, and use social media well to make players and sponsors alike feel valued,” said Catriona Shearer.
Finally, Scotland captain Rachel Corsie picked up the Val McDermid Award for the Spirit of SWF, which recognises outstanding contributions in challenging inequality, pushing boundaries and promoting the women’s game, sometimes against the odds.
In a video accepting the award, Corsie said: “Football has offered me so many opportunities, it’s given me so much back, but something I’ve learned as I’ve got older is to make sure you leave the game in a better place. That’s something over the last few years I’ve really tried to do, so to be recognised in this way is something that truly does mean a lot to me.”
After dinner entertainment was provided by comedian Ray Bradshaw.