Match Preview :- Hednesford Town - Monday August 29th, 2005 (3:00PM)
After Celtic?s first win against Worksop, Celtic now look ahead to Bank Holiday Monday when they make the long trip south to newly promoted Hednesford Town. Hednesford are currently four places below Celtic on fifteenth, having won once (Alfreton Town) and drawn once (Gainsborough Trinity).

The Pitmen earned promotion through the play-offs at the end of last season having finished fourth, eight points behind the winners, Histon. They scored sixty-eight goals, conceding only forty-eight, with Andy Bell their leading scorer. Bell got off to a similar start this season, scoring the only goal in their only victory at home over Alfreton in their second game of the season. Unfortunately, he picked up a calf strain in that game, but will probably be fit in time for Celtic?s clash with them on Monday!

So far this season, Hednesford have given a good account of themselves, scoring in all four of their games so far. They recently held Gainsborough to a 1-1 draw at Gainsborough, though it took a late strike from the penalty spot to earn a point. They were also part of a seven goal thriller at home to Hinckley last week, losing out 3-4. Their three conceded goals away at Barrow on the opening day means that Hednesford have conceded eight goals in four matches, an average of two a game. They?ve scored six, which is 1.5 goals per game.

All except one of their goals have come in the second half, whilst most of their conceding is done in the run up to half time. Lee Barrow and Paul McMahon are joint top scorers on two apiece, with McMahon getting both his in the home defeat to Hinckley.

With their first win under their belt, Celtic will be looking to continue their good form and claim their first away win of the season. We have beaten Hednesford before, once out of six times of trying, back in 1995 when we won away 1-0 during our respective stints in the Conference National. Hednesford have beaten us four times and the last game we played against them was a 1-1 draw.

Celtic are scoring and conceding two goals a game on average. Neil Prince and Lee Ellington have now been joined in the scoring list by Paul Sykes, though Prince still leads it with four goals. Most of our goals have also been scored in the second half, and we have leaked three in the last minutes of the games we?ve played.

It is likely that Grant Beckett and Paul Szewczyk will be in the Hednesford side. Beckett missed the past two games with flu, whilst Szewczyk is their latest signing. In their recent draw with Gainsborough Trinity, Hednesford lined up as:
1. Tommy Whittle
2. Ross Adams
3. Mark Branch
4. Lee Barrow
5. Richard Teesdale
6. Lee Williams
7. Jamie Barrett
8. Rob Heath
9. Colin Hunter
10. Andy Bell
11. Paul McMahon

Celtic are spending another season struggling with injuries, and lined up in our recent win against Worksop Town as:
1. Paul Pettinger
2. Grant Black
3. Paul Sykes
4. Barrie Keeling
5. Mark Haran
6. Chris Price
7. Steve Garvey
8. Scott Willis
9. Lee Ellington
10. Scott Murcott
11. Neil Prince

Anybody expecting Hednesford to roll over because they are newly promoted will be in for a shock. They?ve played extremely well and brought in some quality over the summer to compete at this level, something that they will probably do. They are an ex-Conference team, and want to get back there. This will be a tough match and it will require a good performance from Celtic to come away with anything. The automated prediction has gone for 3-2 to Hednesford, and unless Celtic put on a decent show, that?s probably going to be the score line. I have faith in Celtic, though, and I think Celtic can get their first away win of the campaign.
Directions
Distance: 82
Time: 1 hour and 40 minutes

From the M67 join the M60 towards Stockport.
After 7 miles, leave the M60 at Junction 4 (Chester, M6) to join the M56 Stay on the M56 for 7 miles, coming off at junction 7 (Northwich, M6) to join the A556.
The roundabout can be avoided by using the slip road.
Stay on the A556 for 5 miles to the roundabout with the M6.
Join the M6 southbound (Birmingham) avoiding the roundabout by using the slip road.
Stay on the M6 for 48 miles to junction 12 (Telford, A5).
At the roundabout at the end of the slip road, turn left (exit 1 of 4) onto the A5.
After 2.
5 miles there is a roundabout (Longford Island) with the A4601 - go straight across (exit 2 of 5) to stay on the A5.
After 1 mile there is a roundabout (Churchbridge Island) just after going under a railway bridge.
Turn left (exit 1 of 5) onto the A34/A460 (Walsall Road) towards Rugeley.
Immediately, there is a second roundabout.
Go straight across (exit 2 of 3) onto the A460 (Eastern Way).
Stay on the A460 for 1.
5 miles across 4 more roundabouts.
At the fifth roundabout (with a McDonald's beside it), turn right (exit 3 of 5) onto Hemlock Way.
Go to the end of Hemlock Way (about three quarters of a mile) to a roundabout (Cross Keys Island) - go straight across (exit 2 of 4) onto Keys Park Road.
After 250 yards there is another roundabout - turn right (exit 3 of 4).
The ground is on the left.

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