Where Are They Now? – The 2018 Hibernian Cup Double Winning Squad

For three and a bit seasons Hibernian dominated cup competitions in Scotland winning seven trophies on the bounce in the process. That run was eventually brought to an end as Glasgow City emerged 4-3 victors in what was for many the best Scottish Women’s Cup Final ever last November at Tyencastle. A winter of upheaval followed once again for the Leith side who have now grown used to seeing their best talent move on to pastures but has the grass always been greener and what happened to the sides that sealed both domestic trophies in 2018 by a final aggregate score of 17-0 across the two finals?

Editor Chris Marshall (@MFPTasty) takes a look at the twenty-one players who featured across their 9-0 victory over Celtic in the 2018 SWPL Cup Final at the Falkirk Stadium and 8-0 victory over Motherwell at Firhill in the 2018 Scottish Women’s Cup Final and asks, where are they now?

Jenna Fife (Goalkeeper) – Played in the Scottish Cup Final

Fife took over the number one jersey from her rival below in the summer of 2018 and played a key role as Hibernian defeated Glasgow City on penalties in the 2019 SWPL Cup Final saving three times during the shootout. In December 2019 she became the first of a number of players to make the switch to Rangers and is firmly established as their number one going into the 2020 campaign.

A regular back up to City’s Lee Alexander at international level she kept a clean sheet during Scotland’s 3-0 victory over Ukraine at the recent Pinatar Cup tournament making a number of key saves in the process.

Hannah Reid (Goalkeeper) – Played in the SWPL Cup Final

Reid kept goal during her side’s 9-0 victory over Celtic but the former Bristol City player was soon heading back south and currently turns out for FA Championship side Durham where she reigned as number one last season.

This campaign she has only made four appearances with Megan Borthwick getting more game time under boss Lee Sanders.

Emma Brownlie (Defender) – Played in both the SWPL Cup Final & Scottish Cup Final

Brownlie left Edinburgh in January 2019 to join FAWSL side Everton teaming up with her former boss at Hibernian Willie Kirk.

Her game time was limited though and she made only five appearances before she returned to Scotland in September 2019 to sign for Rangers where she currently holds position as one of the first names in the Gers backline. A provider of some of the best deliveries in Scotland from her full back position.

Siobhan Hunter (Defender) – Played in both the SWPL Cup & Scottish Cup Final

Central defender Hunter is one of only seven players still to currently turn out for the Hibees. She scored in every round bar the final en route to the 2019 Scottish Cup showpiece and is as well known for her goal-scoring prowess from set pieces as she is for her direct approach to on-field confrontations with players and officials alike.

Cailin Michie (Defender) – Played in both the SWPL Cup & Scottish Cup Final

Versatile defender Michie was voted Coaches Player of the Year at the end of the 2018 season with Grant Scott announcing during the awards ceremony that, “Performance wise, she’s been an 8, 9, 10 every game. We’re delighted with her progress and she’s secured herself a place in the team this year.”

She continued to hold down a place in the following season and in December 2019 earned a move to the Damallsvenskan with former Swedish champions Pitea IF in the far north of the country.

Joelle Murray (Defender) – Played in the Scottish Cup Final

Hibernian captain and a one club woman. She stepped into the caretaker role following the departure of Grant Scott before the appointment of former U23’s Head Coach, Dean Gibson. The 33-year-old, who was part of Scotland’s 2019 World Cup squad, may be coming towards the back-end of her career but her experience will be vital as Hibernian continue to look to youth.

Ellis Notley (Defender) – Played in both the SWPL Cup & Scottish Cup Final

21-year-old defender Notley is perhaps the least heralded of the current Hibernian backline but the former youth international will know that a sustained run of form will potentially open the door for further opportunities. Has also been deployed in midfield but often looks most conformable operating in one of the side positions of a defensive three.

Kirsty Smith (Defender) – Played in the SWPL Cup Final

Smith would be one of two Hibernian players to swap Leith for Leigh in signing for Manchester United in June 2018. A key part of the United side that sealed promotion to the WSL last season she started the 2019/20 season on the fringes but had come more to the fore in recent weeks before everybody’s campaign was brought to an abrupt halt in March.

She features regularly for the national side including coming on as a sub during Scotland’s maiden appearance at the Women’s World Cup against England and is one of a number of full back options available to Shelley Kerr going forward.

Rachel McLauchlan (Defender) – Played in both the SWPL Cup & Scottish Cup Final

In the year Michie won the Coaches Player of the Year McLauchlan was crowned Player’s Player of the Year and it was no surprise when England came calling for the dynamic full back.

There was some surprise when that move was to Yeovil Town and things disintegrated quickly for McLauchlan at the Somerset club as just two months after making the move The Glovers went into administration. McLauchlan would return north where she has quickly become a key member of the Glasgow City side that completed a League and Cup double in 2019 along with progressing to the quarter finals of the UEFA Women’s Champions League.

Clare Williamson (Defender) – Played in the Scottish Cup Final

Full back Williamson was a late substitute as Hibernian defeated Motherwell 8-0 in the 2018 Scottish Cup Final but failed to hold down a regular place in the side after a spell out with injury.

She moved to city rival Hearts in the second half of 2019 and would go on to win the SWPL2 title as well as being appointed vice-captain ahead of the 2020 SWPL1 campaign.

Lizzie Arnot (Midfielder) – Played in the SWPL Cup

Arnot scored five as Hibs routed Celtic at the Falkirk Stadium and it would be a suitable sign off for the prolific midfielder-cum-forward who would join team mate Kirsty Smith in moving to Manchester.

The pair’s partnership at United was key in their promotion charge although this campaign she too has had to raise her game in the face of competition from the likes of Leah Galton, Jess Sigsworth and international team mate Kirsty Hanson. Her partnership with Smith was one utilised to good effect as Scotland claimed the Pinatar Cup.

Chelsea Cornet (Midfielder) – Played in both the SWPL Cup & Scottish Cup Final

Cornet is one of the less talked about stars from this trophy laden era but her industry in midfield is rarely overlooked by keen observers of the game. Those onlookers included Rangers who added the midfielder to their squad in January of this year and there are many curious how a full-time regime may bring her game on even further still.

Amy Gallacher (Midfielder) – Played in both the SWPL Cup & Scottish Cup Final

Gallacher, who’s family is steeped in Scottish football history, is perhaps set for her biggest season since signing for the Hibees at the end of 2016. With the departures of Chelsea Cornet and Kirsten Reilly over recent seasons the onus will be on the Dundonian and Shannon McGregor to provide support to Scotland international Rachael Boyle in the middle of the park.

Gallacher has shown plenty of promise scoring in both the Champions League and the Scottish Cup Final last season and another step forward in her development will be the hope for all involved at the Edinburgh club.

Shannon McGregor (Midfielder) – Played in the SWPL Cup

As just mentioned, 2020 is shaping up to be a big year for McGregor with the 20-year-old showing early signs of stepping up to the task as a howitzer of a long ball in the Hibees SWPL1 season opener against Spartans lead to the cross that sealed an injury time winner for her side.

A scorer in the 2018 SWPL Cup Final a continuation of that form will no doubt help soften the blow of the Edinburgh sides most recent tranche of losses from the playing squad.

Kirsten Reilly (Midfielder) – Played in both the SWPL Cup & Scottish Cup Final

Reilly remained at Hibernian until the summer of 2019, allowing her enough time to claim another SWPL Cup winners medal in May of that year. An imposing figure in the middle of the park with composure on the ball and the odd worldie in her locker it was little surprise when Bristol City came calling.

Her spell in the WSL would not be a fruitful one though as she amassed just one minute of action and she returned to Scotland to sign for Rangers in December just a few months later where she currently plies her trade.

Lisa Robertson (Midfielder) – Played in both the SWPL Cup & Scottish Cup Final

Robertson’s all action nature made her an immediate favourite to all Hibernian fans but she would be another to move on to pastures new before 2018 was over, ending a four year spell with the club to sign for FA Championship side Durham.

A seven time cup winner with the Hibees over two spells the 27-year-old is now back in Scotland as one of the first players to be offered a professional deal by Celtic this term.

Lauren Davidson (Forward) – Played in the Scottish Cup Final

Scotland U19 forward Davidson has been on the fringes of the Hibernian starting XI for a couple of seasons now and has shown in flashes her potential. She was an early substitute for the injured Abi Harrison in the Scottish Cup Final making an immediate scoring impact as Hibs routed the Lanarkshire side.

Another Dean Gibson will be looking to push on in 2020.

Abi Harrison (Forward) – Played in both the SWPL Cup & Scottish Cup Final

A player that made goalscoring look almost too easy during a frighteningly prolific spell north of the border in which Harrison claimed the Golden Boot in both the 2017 and 2018 seasons. She managed a double during what would be her final match for the side in the Scottish Cup Final and the inevitable move south soon followed as she headed for Bristol City in January 2019.

The remainder of the 2018/19 WSL season was treated as a period of adjustment for the Scotland squad player and it looked as though she was set for an extended run in the side this campaign before an ACL injury in November ruled her out for the rest of the season.

Jamie-Lee Napier (Forward) – Played in both the SWPL Cup & Scottish Cup Final

The 2019 SWPL1 Player of the Year has long been tipped as the next big thing in Scottish women’s football. A quick-fire hat-trick in the Scottish Cup Final for the then 18-year-old was viewed as a sign of things to come for a player whose energy would often leave spectators bamboozled as to what her actual position is.

A recent call-up to Shelley Kerr’s Scotland squads she made the move to WSL title contenders Chelsea in December and the move south will be seen as an opportunity for Napier to nail down her most effective role going forward. It won’t be easy though as she has already found minutes tough to come by, however, the work her coach Emma Hayes has done with compatriot Erin Cuthbert leave few in doubt the 19-year-old is in good hands.

Lia Tweedie (Forward) – Played in the Scottish Cup Final

Tweedie was a substitute in both games, coming on during the Scottish Cup Final. A forward who has often acted as back-up to her more prolific contemporaries, she has already seen minutes this season and will be keen to build as the campaign progresses.

Grant Scott (Head Coach) – In charge for both the SWPL Cup and Scottish Cup Finals

Scott would continue the good work from his predecessors after taking over the reins from Kevin Milne in March 2018. He would add the 2019 SWPL Cup to his trophy haul along with another second place finish in the league before leaving the side in December last year.

He is currently No. 2 to long term rival Scott Booth at Glasgow City as the pair look to keep a big spending Old Firm duo, and Hibernian, at bay.

So there you have it, all 21 (+ the coach) covered. Where would you like us to go next? Let us know and we will see what we can do. In the mean time, during these strange times, stay safe and look after one another.

Remember you can follow Leading the Line on Twitter, @LeadingtheLine. Here there will be live insight from the games, comments on the breaking stories from the world of women’s football news as well as early sight of what will be coming via the podcast (available on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Soundcloud and all good podcast outlets) and on the website. It’s right good!

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