Int'l Football Sports

Banyana Banyana stars Van Wyk and Fulutudilu help Glasgow City retain Scottish Women’s Premier League title

By Itumeleng Banda, Johannesburg, South Africa

Janine Van Wyk and Ode Fulutudilu helped Glasgow City to retain the Scottish Women’s Premier League title following a 2-0 win against Rangers in Sunday’s final encounter of the season.

Going into the final day with three points above second-placed Celtic, Scott Booth’s team were needing at least a draw to guarantee their back-to-back title triumph.

The South Africa internationals had starred in Booth’s side campaign since their arrivals to the Scottish club and were at their best to ensure their side record a domestic success.

The hosts got their title deciding contest off to a bright start when Hayley Lauder broke the deadlock 12 minutes into the encounter against the visitors at Broadwood Stadium.

The holders went on to find another breakthrough 20 minutes later when Niamh Farrelly struck to ensure the defending champions seal their 14th consecutive league title.

The result saw Glasgow City secure the title on the final day of the season as they finish on 56pts, three ahead of second-placed Celtic, although both teams eventually qualify for the upcoming Uefa Women’s Champions League, with the latter earning their first ever ticket.

In the encounter, Fulutudilu, who scored six goals in all competitions was in action for the opening 45 minutes before she was replaced by Nicole Robertson, while Van Wyk featured from the start to finish for Glasgow City.

The league title triumph marked the first ever in Europe for the Banyana Banyana captain, who scored three goals in all competitions, while it was the second for her compatriot Fulutudilu, following her remarkable first with Aland United in Finland last season.

The duo are the only South African women to celebrate a title in 2021 and the latest Africans after Nigeria’s Asisat Oshoala with Barcelona, Nigeria’s Christy Ucheibe with SL Benfica, and Ghana’s Alice Kusi with Spartak Subotica, plus trio of Cameroon’s Ngo Mbeleck, Ghana’s Sherifat Sumaila, and Nigeria’s Ucheichi Sunday with Maccabi Kiryat Gat.