On Saturday, Celtic travel to Bamber Bridge for a league clash (kick off 3pm).
Bamber Bridge are currently eighteenth on twelve points, six places and seven points behind Celtic, having played the same number of games. Bamber Bridge were bottom for a week, below Stafford on goal difference, but a 2-0 win in their last match over Stafford left Stafford bottom and Bamber Bridge out of the bottom three, proving the difference a win can make.
That win ended a nine game win drought, with six losses and three draws since their previous 3-0 win over Atherton. Bamber Bridge have only had one other win this season, a 3-2 win over Ashton in Bamber Bridge’s first home game of the season.
All three of their wins have come at home, away from home, they are yet to find much joy, with only one point from a 1-1 draw away at Buxton at the start of September.
Their nineteen goals this season (thirteen of them at home) have come at a rate of 1.3 goals per game (1.9 at home), and they have scored in every home game, only failing to score in three away matches.
Bamber Bridge's goals have come from seven different scorers though Alastair Waddecar is their danger man with eight of their goals this season putting him third in the goal scorers chart for the league.
Although their problem has been defending, with twenty-eight goals conceded at a rate of 1.8 per game. Only ten of those goals came at home at a rate of 1.4 goals per game, and they have kept two clean sheets at home, though they have conceded in every away match.
We’ve already met Bamber Bridge this season, when they visited Bower Fold a couple of weeks ago in mid-October. Celtic won that game 3-2, thanks to an early goal from Darius Osei and second half goals from Nathan Valentine and Craig Hobson.
Our last visit to Bamber Bridge was last season, when we lost 3-0, having beaten them earlier in the season 3-2 at home. Our visit prior to that was in 2001, there being a long gap when the two teams were in different divisions.
We won that game 2-0 with goals from Tony Sullivan and Dominic Crookes. In the last forty years, we’ve visited four times in the league, winning two and losing two.
In Bamber Bridge’s last match, the 2-0 home win over Stafford, they lined up as:
1. Lloyd Rigby
2. Matthew Thornson
3. Adam Sumner
4. Matt Lawlor
5. Kieran Charnock
6. Danny Wisdom
7. Alistair Waddecar
8. Joe Booth
9. James Dean
10. Louis Hayes
11. Ryan White
It’s traditional for former Celtic players to be in opposition teams, and Bamber have Callum Spooner, Danny Wisdom and James Dean in their number.
Celtic lost our last match, 1-0 away at Radcliffe thanks to a first half penalty. In that match, we lined up as:
1. Alex Fojtíček
2. Declan Walker
3. Kallum Mantack
4. Ross Dent
5. Stephen O’Halloran
6. Chris Smalley
7. Scott Bakkor
8. Anthony Whitehead
9. Craig Hobson
10. Darius Osei
11. Jonathan Ustabasi
A win for Celtic could move us up to sixth, level on points with fifth placed FC United (a really good win could put us in the Play Off Spots), with six teams within reach: Witton, Nantwich, Whitby, Grantham, Mickleover (at home to Witton) and Matlock. A loss on the other hand, sees three teams able to overtake us: Radcliffe and Scarborough play each other, and Hyde (away at Lancaster). Nantwich, Whitby, Grantham and Matlock aren’t playing, whilst Witton and Mickleover face off in Mickleover, meaning the teams below are playing, whilst the teams above are not making a win even more valuable.
|Home win||Atherton Collieries||3-0||Tue 3rd Sep|
|Away win||Never won away|
|Home defeat||Basford United||1-3||Sat 14th Sep|
|Away defeat||Gainsborough Trinity||4-1||Tue 1st Oct|
|Home score||Ashton United||3-2||Sat 24th Aug|
|Away score||Stalybridge Celtic||3-2||Sat 12th Oct|