Match Preview :- Chorley - Saturday November 29th, 2014 (15:00:00)

On Saturday, Celtic start their Trophy Trail at Chorley, a team currently in the mix for automatic promotion. They are currently third in the table, seventeen places and eighteen points ahead of Celtic and have a game in hand. There will be a match centre for this game.

Celtic's last win at Chorley was back in October 1991, when we won 3-2, but that's our only win there. Our last visit, earlier this season was a 2-0 loss, with Chris Almond and former Celt, James Dean, getting the goals despite a good first half from the Celts. There have been several personnel changes at Celtic since that match, so hopefully Celtic can turn the table this time, figuratively and literally – given the two teams relative positions.

Chorley's start to their first season in the Conference North is, as to be expected, great. They've scored thirty-three goals (twenty at home), conceding just twenty-two (and only seven at home). Their top scorer this season is (unsurprisingly) James Dean, who has found the net eight times in the league, five of which he scored at home. Darren Stephenson is right up there with him, on seven, and in total they have had thirteen different scorers so far this season. They are most prolific in the first half, mainly around the twenty-five minute mark, and most vulnerable in the dying moments. Chorley have only been losing at half time once this season, but did go onto lose, whereas in the eight matches they've led at half time in, they've gone onto win them all.

With only one loss all season at home, when Boston United won 2-1, they have a solid home record. Away from home they've lost three and drawn three, and won three. Pleasing symmetry, but shows they lack the consistency away from home that they have at home. The only other points that they've dropped at home was a 2-2 draw against Lowestoft.

In their last match, the 3-2 home win over Hyde (coming back being 2-0 down inside ten minutes), Chorley lined up as:
1. Aaron Grundy
2. Dale Whitham
3. Jake Cottrell
4. Mark Ross
5. Chris Doyle
6. Adam Roscoe
7. Josh Hine
8. Harry Winter
9. Chris Simm
10. Darren Stephenson
11. Adam Mather

Celtic won their last match. Away from home. In a basement battle against Gloucester. In that match, that finished 1-0 to Celtic, Celtic lined up as:
1. Lewis King
2. Oliver Crowley
3. Nathan Heath
4. Todd Jordan
5. Matt Regan
6. Stefan Galinski
7. Aidan Chippendale
8. Scott Kerr
9. Ben McKenna
10. Charlie Ennis
11. Kevin Holsgrove

It's been eight months since Celtic's last away win, but Keith Briggs has always maintained that the team is just a smattering of confidence away from being world beaters. Hopefully that confidence will still be present today. Recently, Celtic have saved their best performances for away games, and they will need it against a Chorley team flying in the league.

Distance: 32
Time: 45 minutes

Take the M60 to junction 16 (M61) and join the M61 northbound following signs for Preston.
Stay on the M61 for 9 miles to junction 6 (A6027, Chorley).
At the roundabout, turn right (exit 2 of 3) onto the A6 (Chorley Road) towards Chorley.
After six and a half miles, turn left at the roundabout (1 of 4) onto Duke Street.
Take the second left onto Ashby Street and the entrance to the car park is the second right.