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Match Preview :- Vauxhall Motors - Saturday September 3rd, 2005 (13:00:00)
Next at Bower Fold are Vauxhall Motors on Saturday with a 1pm kick off. Vauxhall have not had the start to the season that they would have liked, having won just one game, and lost four consecutive games. Their one win came against Alfreton, with losses against Gainsborough, Redditch and Barrow at home, and Droylsden away. The Droylsden loss is one that they?ll want to put behind them as they suffered a 4-0 drubbing.

So far, they have gathered 3 points, which puts them three points behind Celtic, but ten places in the league. They are, historically, a relegation battling side, and this campaign has started out no different. Past league results against them put the two sides on a stalemate, with both having won two (one at home and one away), drawing the other two meetings. This was the team that dumped us out of the Cheshire Senior cup last season, despite Celtic getting the ball into the back of the net several times only for them to be wiped out for off-sides. Interestingly, there has never been a clean sheet in these meetings.

Peter Cuminskey is already their top scorer, as would be expected from this player. So far in the campaign, he has half of Vauxhall?s goals (he?s scored two). The other two have come from Leighton McGivern and Steven McNulty They have failed to score in two of their games, and have a goal-per-game ratio of about 0.8, whilst their conceding-per-game is two, or ten goals conceded in five games. They have yet to keep a clean sheet so far. Their goals scored have been evenly spread with two in each half, and there is a small cluster of conceding around the half time interval.

Celtic by comparison, have won one and drawn three, of their opening five games. Whilst we have always managed to score, we have yet to keep a clean sheet, so this game looks set to have goals at either end. We are unbeaten at home this season, with Northwich pegging us back in the last moment with an equaliser, and Worksop unable to do so (not for want of trying though). Our goals scored and conceded have tended to be in the second half, with our poorest defensive period in the last few minutes of the match, conceding half our goals in the last ten minutes. We seem to be at our most prolific in the last twenty minutes of a match, with two thirds of our goals coming in this period.

In their recent loss at home to Gainsborough Trinity, Vauxhall lined up as:
1. Tim Dittmar
2. Lee Woodyatt
3. Wayne McDermott
4. Steve McNulty
5. Phil Brazier
6. Sam McNutt
7. Mike Garitty
8. Robbie Lawton
9. Leighton McGivern
10. Brian Mogan
11. Peter Cuminskey

Ahead of the game, they do not appear to have any injury or suspension worries.

In our recent away draw at Hednesford, Celtic lined up 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. Steve Smith
11. Neil Prince

Celtic still have injuries to Phil Eastwood and Darren Hockenhull, but the rest of the injuries are starting to clear, though final confirmation is still required before they can be detailed, and of course, Celtic have a new signing in the form of ex-Runcorn left back Jordan Burke.

Celtic are seven points off the league leaders, Northwich, but only three points off the play off spots. A win against our Cheshire Rivals would help close that gap, especially with Droylsden playing Hucknall; at least one of them will drop points on Saturday.

Given the nature of the two teams, the automated prediction has gone for a 4-3 win to Celtic this week. Whilst I?d gladly accept that, everybody at Celtic would prefer us to keep a clean sheet and still score four goals!
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