Sadiku hoping to emulate 'role model' Larsson's success at Celtic Women

The new Hoops manager takes charge of her first game in Friday's Old Firm semi-final clash.

New Celtic Women’s manager Elena Sadiku is preparing to take charge of her first game in Friday night’s Old Firm semi-final and she has high aspirations.

The Swede revealed she grew up watching Hoops icon Henrik Larsson in her younger days and is hoping she can emulate some of the club legend’s success in Glasgow.

The man affectionally known by the Celtic faithful as the “King of Kings” scored 242 goals in 315 games during a seven year spell at Parkhead, while playing a key-role in reaching a European final and stopping Rangers winning ten-in-a-row.

Sadiku joked that she could one day be known as the “Queen of Queens” if she can replicate some of that success for the women’s team.

She said her countryman, who scored 37 goals in over 100 caps for the Sweden national team while also helping them to a third place finish at the World Cup, was her role model as a child during a trophy-laden career that also saw him play for Feyenoord, Manchester United and Barcelona, where he won the Champions League in 2006.

She said: “He was my role model when I was young and he was playing at Celtic, so I know all about his time here.

“The King of Kings right? Maybe I can become the Queen of Queens?”

The 30-year-old, who had to retire at the age of 23 after almost dying from sepsis, will be in the dugout for the first-time since replacing Fran Alonso at the helm and the stakes couldn’t be any higher for a first game.

Celtic will take on Rangers with a place in the SWPL Cup final on the line and she can’t wait to get started as she aims to be the coach that she always dreamed of having.

“I am thrilled, excited and over the moon, I have been overwhelmed with all feelings. Celtic is obviously a huge club and we look forward to what’s ahead.

“Tomorrow will be the first test and that is going to be amazing.

“It is a huge game to start with and I am just really excited.”

Celtic play Rangers at the Excelsior Stadium in Airdrie on Friday night with a 7.35pm kick-off.

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