On Saturday, Celtic make the short trip over to our neighbouring SCFC, Stockport. Kick-off is 3pm, there will be a match centre for this game.
Stockport are currently third in the table, and unbeaten. So far they have beaten Boston United at home 2-1 and drawn 1-1 with North Ferriby. They have also beaten Telford and FC United away, and drawn with Nuneaton Town. This is in stark contrast to their start last year, where they lost three of their opening five matches, including an early season defeat away at Bower Fold. They did, however, recover and finished eleventh, after climbing the table between September and November, with only two losses in eleven games. They were up and down for the remainder of the season, but won enough to stay in the top half of the table.
Previous meetings with Stockport have generally been in the home teamís favour, with three wins at Bower Fold for Celtic, and three for Stockport. We have drawn twice at Edgely Park, a 0-0 in 2013 and a 2-2 in the FA Trophy in 2011. And of course, who can forget the Cheshire Senior Cup final back in 2001? 5-1 to a rampant Celtic at Ewen Fields. The last meeting between the two teams was a 4-3 win for Stockport at Edgley Park, with Jamie Allen and Ben McKennaís comebacks, and Jamie Allenís second that gave Celtic the lead cancelled out by a last second goal from a set-piece. Celticís last win over our neighbours was at the start of last season when we won 3-2, with Ben McKenna, Aidan Chippendale and Paul Ennis giving Celtic a first half lead Stockport couldnít erode.
Last seasonís top scorers for the Hatters were Kristian Dennis on eleven, former Celt, Jack Ryan with eight and Scott Spencer also on eight. All three have left the club. However, Stockport have strengthened this season. In their last match, away at Nuneaton Town, though Glenn Rule may have scored a contender for goal of the season, they drew 1-1. In that game, they lined up as:
1. Danny Hurst
2. Danny Morton
3. Gareth Roberts
4. Sean O'Hanlon
5. Jordan Thorniley
6. Glenn Rule
7. Callum Dyson
8. Lewis Montrose
9. Kayode Odejayi
10. Andy Robinson
11. Lamin Colley
Celticís last game was a 3-1 home defeat to table topping Solihull Moors, with Bohan Dixonís equaliser cancelled out by two second half goals. In that match, Celtic lined up as:
1. Tony McMillan
2. Peter Wylie
3. John Shaw
4. Matty Hughes
5. Jack Higgins
6. Aarron Chalmers
7. Ben McKenna
8. Dale Wright
9. Alex Johnson
10. Bohan Dixon
11. Aidan Chippendale
There is a full match program on Saturday, other matches:
Brackley Town (4pts 15th) v Worcester City (4pts 17th)
Bradford Park Avenue (2pts 21st) v North Ferriby United (6pts 11th)
Chorley (7pts 10th) v Harrogate Town (10pts 5th)
Curzon Ashton (3pts 20th) v AFC Fylde (10pts 6th)
Gainsborough Trinity (8pts 9th) v Boston United (9pts 8th)
Gloucester City (4pts 16th) v AFC Telford (1pts 22nd)
Hednesford Town (5pts 13th) v FC United of Manchester (4pts 19th)
Lowestoft Town (6pts 12th) v Corby Town (9pts 7th)
Solihull Moors (13pts 1st) v Alfreton Town (4pts 14th)
Tamworth (11pts 4th) v Nuneaton Town (13pts 2nd)
The general rule of thumb is table positions start to sort themselves out by ten games, but Celtic need a couple of wins if they are to have a reasonable position ten games in.
Take the M60 to junction 1 (Stockport).
At the roundabout at the end of the sliproad turn back on yourself (exit 5 of 6) onto the A5145 following signs for Stockport West.
At the next roundabout go across (exit 3 of 5) onto the A560 (King Street West).
After half a mile turn right at the roundabout (2 of 3) onto Mercian Way.
The ground is a third of a mile on the left.