On Saturday Celtic will welcome the league?s other Celtic, Farsley. Farsley are currently sixteenth in the league on forty points, seventeen points and ten places behind Celtic having played a game less. There will be a live match centre for this game with a kick off at 3pm.
Farsley came down out of the Conference National at the start of the season, and have struggled to re-adapt to life in the Blue Square North. After a bad start that saw them win just two games in the opening ten games, their season picked up with a run of seven wins in ten games, raising them to a season height of tenth. The start of 2009 saw a downturn in form, and they lost eight games on the run, a league record for this season. Things have picked up in the last five games, with three wins and two losses. Farsley have had the fewest draws of any team in the league, with four. They have recently beaten Telford 1-0 at home, and Hucknall and Hinckley away (both 2-1). Those away wins were their first since they beat Workington back in November, with King?s Lynn their only other away win this season.
Our last meeting with Farsley at Bower Fold was in the FA cup, a game we won 4-0. This came off the back of a win at the Throstle Nest when we won 3-2 with a late goal from Andy Smart. Farsley?s last visit in the league was a 2-0 win back in November 2006 when they were on the way to back-to-back promotions, though we did hold them to a 1-1 draw at the return fixture. In the past ten years, Farsley have made only one other visit to the Fold, when they lost 4-2 in the FA Cup in 1999.
Farsley?s top scorer this season is Andy Campbell on nine goals, despite leaving the club earlier this year. James Walshaw is his closest rival on eight, with Jake Speight on seven. Both of these have also left the club. The top scorer still with Farsley is Lee Tuck, on three. On average, Farsley score 1.3 goals per game (0.9 away), and concede 1.4 goals per game (1.4 away). They have kept eight clean sheets, with three on their travels, and failed to score eleven times, seven on the road. Their most dangerous period is the last quarter of an hour where they have scored sixteen of their forty-four goals this season, whilst their most vulnerable period is around half time, when they have conceded twelve of their forty-seven goals this season.
Craig Bentham will be serving a twenty-one game suspension for a sending off in November having had an appeal for the thirty-five day ban reduced. Otherwise, Farsley are at full strength for Saturday?s match. In their last match, the 1-0 win at home over Telford, Farsley lined up as:
1. Curtis Aspden
2. Michael Aspin
3. Darren Green
4. Craig Bentham
5. Mark Jackson
6. Natahan D?Laryea
7. Lee Tuck
8. Dominic Krief
9. Damian Reeves
10. Gareth Grant
11. Rory Prendergast
Celtic may be giving a home debut to new signing, striker Adam Newbold on Saturday, whilst Alex Meechan returns for his second stint. Going the other way, Ashley Woolliscroft has left to join Newcastle Town. In Celtic?s last match, we lined up as:
1. Paul Phillips
2. Ashley Woolliscroft
3. Rhys Meynell
4. Barrie Keeling
5. Michael Bowler
6. John Hardiker
7. Steve Torpey
8. Keith Briggs
9. Lee Ellington
10. Adam Newbold
11. Alex Meechan
The automated prediction algorithm has suggested a 1-1 draw despite Farsley?s lack of draws this season; this is off the back of the two teams recent results that have seen Celtic win three of their last six home matches, and Farsley winning their last two away matches.
Other matches on Saturday:
Alfreton Town (60pts, 5th) v Southport (67pts, 3rd)
Blyth Spartans (36pts, 18th) v Vauxhall Motors (50pts, 10th)
Burscough (33pts, 20th) v Hucknall Town (23pts, 22nd)
Droylsden (54pts, 8th) v Solihull Moors (43pts, 15th)
Fleetwood Town (48pts, 11th) v King?s Lynn (45pts, 14th)
Gainsborough Trinity (46pts, 12th) v AFC Telford United (61pts, 4th)
Harrogate Town (55pts, 7th) v Tamworth (76pts, 1st)
Hinckley United (50pts, 9th) v Hyde United (29pts, 21st)
Redditch United (36pts, 19th) v Workington (45pts, 13th)
Stafford Rangers (38pts, 17th) v Gateshead (73pts, 2nd)
Celtic need a win to get back into the playoffs, with Southport and Alfreton both playing each other, one or both will drop points; though we would need Southport to win in order to get into the playoffs on goal difference. In addition, Harrogate and Droylsden are both within striking distance of taking advantage of a Celtic slip up.