On Saturday, Celtic face Nuneaton Town (kick off 3pm). Nuneaton are currently sixth in the table on sixty points, twelve places and eighteen points ahead of Celtic, though they have played a game more. There will be a match centre for this game.
Nuneaton have been there or there abouts all season, spending most of it in the top five, with only a few weeks out of it. They currently sit a point behind fifth placed Boston, and have two games in hand on the Lincolnshire team. Nuneaton had a fantastic start to the season, winning their opening four and going unbeaten in six. Through the whole of 2015 they only lost three games, but in 2016 their results have been much more patchy, with only three wins.
They have the fourth best defence in the league, it would be the best defence in the league if they had played more games, as nobody in the league has conceded fewer goals than their forty. Their top scorer is Aaron Williams who has twelve, a fifth of all the goals they’ve scored. Both Rob Duffy and Marlon Harewood will be looking to pip Williams to the post for the Golden Boot as they are both on ten. On average they score two goals a game away from home and concede 1.4. They have kept eleven clean sheets, though all but three have been at home, and they have failed to score in just two away games.
We played Nuneaton earlier in the season, pulling back a half time three nil deficit to draw 3-3. Nuneaton had played most of the match with ten men, after David Morgan’s two bookings in the opening ten minutes. Aidan Chippendale, Alex Johnson and Darius Osei grabbed the goals for Celtic. Historically, Nuneaton last won at Bower Fold back in January 2011, when they won 2-0, their last visit here in March 2012 ended with Celtic winning 4-1. Over the last eight visits, Nuneaton have won two, Celtic four and there have been two draws.
Nuneaton’s last match was a 0-0 draw at home to Telford. Their last away win was a 3-1 win over Corby, which was followed by a loss away at Gainsborough and a draw with Fylde. In their l;ast match, the 0-0 draw with Telford, they lined up as:
1. Jordan Smith
2. James Clifton
3. Cieron Keane
4. Joe Maguire
5. Lathaniel Rowe-Turner
6. Tom Elliott
7. Jordan Keane
8. Shane Byrne
9. Vamera Sanogo
10. Elliot Whitehouse
11. Joe Ironside
Celtic have not won since the 3-1 win over Brackley Town in March, but conversely, we’ve not lost at home since February, when Harrogate scraped a 1-0 win. John Shaw is Celtic’s only major doubt, but the injury at Harrogate wasn’t as bad as first feared, and he is now walking again. In our last match, the 1-1 home draw with Fylde, Celtic lined up as:
1. Tony McMillan
2. Pete Wylie
3. Danny Wisdom
4. Matty Hughes
5. Jack Higgins
6. Aaron Chalmers
7. Charlie Joyce
8. Alex Mudimu
9. Chris Simm
10. Adam Farrell
11. Aidan Chippendale
Celtic are hovering just above the bottom three, four points clear of Lowestoft and Brackley. Three points would ensure that neither of the bottom two could catch us, and could, bizarrely, lift us six places too twelfth if FC United, Gainsborough, Worcester, Gloucester, Bradford and Telford all lose, and that would put both Alfreton and Stockport within reach. The bottom half of the table is that close.
There is a full program on Saturday:
AFC Fylde (68pts 2nd) v North Ferriby United (67pts 3rd)
AFC Telford (43pts 17th) v Solihull Moors (81pts 1st)
Alfreton Town (51pts 10th) v Harrogate Town (67pts 4th)
Boston United (61pts 5th) v Bradford Park Avenue (43pts 16th)
Chorley (53pts 8th) v Gainsborough Trinity (46pts 13th)
Corby Town (31pts 22nd) v FC United of Manchester (46pts 12th)
Gloucester City (44pts 15th) v Brackley Town (39pts 19th)
Hednesford Town (31pts 20th) v Tamworth (59pts 7th)
Lowestoft Town (39pts 29th) v Curzon Ashton (53pts 9th)
Worcester City (44pts 14th) v Stockport County (51pts 11th)