SWF’s Championship and League One are set to kick off on the 20 August for the second season as nationwide leagues below the Scottish Women’s Premier League.
Fixtures for the top tiers run by Scottish Women’s Football have been released, which have ten teams in the Championship and 11 teams in League One after the withdrawal of Grampian Ladies.
The Championship opening day will see newly-promoted League One Champions Edinburgh City visit Dryburgh Athletic in Dundee and fellow newcomers Westdyke travel to Edinburgh to play Hutchison Vale. Meanwhile, East Fife visit Ayr United, Inverness Caledonian Thistle visit Morton and there is an eye-catching tie between the two clubs who competed for an SWPL play-off last season as Rossvale host Renfrew Ladies.
In League One, there is an echo of the play-offs from the SWFL as promoted sides Bonnyrigg Rose and Forfar Farmington play each other. Also promoted Queen of the South travel to Glasgow to face BSC. Falkirk, who only narrowly missed out on a place in the Championship on the final day last season, visit Edinburgh Caledonia.
Airdrie Ladies host Giffnock Soccer Centre and St Mirren travel to Dundee West.
This season both leagues will see a split after two rounds for one final round, as the race for promotion hots up.
Rapid growth in the number of women’s teams in the grassroots game means that for the second season, the Championship will expand again after this season from 10 to 12 teams. Two teams who meet Championship criteria will be promoted from League One. One will be relegated from League One to the regional SWFL, allowing the winners of all four regional leagues to be promoted if they are eligible.
Commenting on the fixtures release, SWF CEO Aileen Campbell said: “Both the Championship and League One were thrilling competitions last season, and as a result we saw increased interest and coverage as Livingston won promotion to the SWPL and Edinburgh City completed an invincible season in League One.
“This season could be even more exciting as we continue to develop the women’s pyramid, bolstered by new additions who have competed hard for the right to enter the national leagues and play at a higher level.
“The promotion of Westdyke to the Championship and of Queen of the South and Forfar Farmington to League One means that both leagues have even greater geographic spread than ever before, offering opportunities for even more fans to enjoy competitive women’s football near them.
“Both the new Championship and League One promise to be hard-fought competitive leagues between clubs from right across the country, culminating in prestigious trophies in their own right, and I wish all 21 teams the best of luck for the season.”
The fixture card for the opening day of the season on 20 August looks like this:
Dryburgh Athletic v Edinburgh City
Rossvale v Renfrew Ladies
Ayr United v East Fife
Morton v Inverness Caledonian Thistle
Hutchison Vale v Westdyke
Airdrie v Giffnock
BSC Glasgow v Queen of the South
Bonnyrigg Rose v Forfar Farmington
Edinburgh Caledonia v Falkirk
Dundee West v St Mirren