Match Preview :- Vauxhall Motors - Saturday April 12th, 2008 (15:00:00)
Celtic welcome bottom battlers Vauxhall Motors on Saturday and have a good chance to go into our last three games of the season on a high. Vauxhall are currently one place off the bottom, eight points from safety with nine left to play for. They are nineteen places and forty-five points behind Celtic, knowing that failure to pick up maximum points will relegate them.

Vauxhall knocked us out of the Cheshire Senior cup earlier in the season after a 3-2 score line, the second time they have done that, also knocking us out in 2004. Our last meeting in the league was at Rivacre Park when we beat them 5-2, and their last visit to the Fold in the league ended in a 3-3 draw in 2006. Our last victory over the Merseyside outfit at the Fold was in 2005 when we won 2-5, and Vauxhall?s last win at the Fold in the league was in 2004, when they beat us 4-3.

This season Vauxhall have not had it good, and have been at the wrong end of some of the worst stats in the league. They are seven goals off conceding 100 goals; they have a goal difference opposite that of Kettering, on -53 to Kettering?s +53. They have the worst home defeat in the league, when Kettering beat them 6-0, and the worst away defeat also at the hands of Kettering, and again 6-0. In addition, they have the highest aggregate score line, when they lost 6-3 away at Hyde. They are bottom of the form chart over ten games, taking just 12.5% of the available points, whilst Celtic have taken 77% in the same period putting us second. On the road, all season they have won just twice (Blyth and Hinckley) and had three draws, taking just nine points from an available sixty. Their last away win was over Hinckley back in January, a game they won 1-0, though they did get a creditable 1-1 draw away at Tamworth in their last away match. The Motormen lost their last game though, 3-0 at home to Hucknall, a result that almost put Hucknall out of reach of Vauxhall.

Their top scorer this season is Paul Taylor, who has scored twelve goals this season, but has scored just once in Motors? last twenty-two appearances. In their last ten games, they have failed to score seven times, and in 450 minutes of football have found the net just once. In their last twenty games, they have kept three clean sheets, once away at Hinckley and twice at home to Boston and Burscough. On average this season, they have scored 0.7 goals per game away (a goal per game overall) and conceded 2.4 goals per game. Eight teams have taken all six points off them, and Celtic could make it nine on Saturday. We have a good chance, with the automated prediction algorithm suggesting a 3-2 score-line in Celtic?s favour.

Russell Hitchen will be serving the last of his three match ban for his sending off against Gainsborough. Top scorer Paul Taylor has been missing the past few games through injury, and will have to have a fitness test ahead of the match on Saturday. Coming in, Thomas Carroll has recently signed and scored on his debut at Tamworth. In their last match, the 3-0 loss at home to Hucknall, Vauxhall lined up as:
1. Andrew Murphy
2. Mark Maddox
3. Jordan Holmes
4. Tom Field
5. Alan Griffiths
6. Craig Robinson
7. Peter Heler
8. Ged Brannan
9. Joe McMahon
10. Thomas Carroll
11. Ashley Williams

Celtic welcomed back Ashley Woolliscroft to the starting line up on Saturday, but Lee Ellington and Garry Burke were both missing through injury. Otherwise, we have no injury or suspension worries, and in our last match, the 3-1 away defeat at Boston, Celtic lined up as:
1. Paddy Gamble
2. Ashley Woolliscroft
3. Andrew Smart
4. Steve Payne
5. Terry Barwick
6. Paul Sykes
7. Steve Torpey
8. Ashley Winn
9. Chris Hall
10. James Dean
11. Alex Meechan

Celtic have a very good chance to go into the play-offs on a high with three home wins, but none of them are cut and dried. Telford are a strong team despite their recent wobble, whilst Vauxhall are playing for their existence, and Redditch have nothing left to play for and will be worry free going into the last game of the season. Celtic need three points to ensure mathematically a play off place, but we will want to finish as high as possible, and so we need the last nine points to get that. Barrow can still reach second spot with a possible tally of 80 still to play for, though that may change after their away game on Tuesday against Cumbrian rivals Workington.

Other games of interest on Saturday:
- AFC Telford v Harrogate Town
- Hucknall Town v Nuneaton Borough
- Redditch United v Barrow
- Southport v Kettering Town

Telford need to get their season back on track against fellow play-off contenders Harrogate, and that won?t be an easy game for either of them (predicted 1-2), whilst Hucknall are scrapping for their lives, and Nuneaton could well lose that one (predicted 1-1). Barrow are going to be going up against a Redditch side that has won six out of their last eight games, though given Barrows form, they are in with a good chance (predicted 1-2). Kettering will be in party mood, and Celtic know all too well that this can have a negative effect on the outcome, though Kettering are predicted to win it 3-1, I think the party feeling will result in a home win there.

If games go to form, the top six will look like this (points/possible in brackets):
1. Kettering (87/99)
2. Stalybridge (76/82)
3. Harrogate (74/83)
4. Telford (71/77)
5. Barrow (69/78)
6. Nuneaton (68/74)
P Pts
18 Solihull Moors 39 43
19 Hinckley United 39 38
20 Hucknall Town 40 37
21 Vauxhall Motors 40 28
22 Leigh Genesis 39 26
Sat 12 Apr 2008Stalybridge Celtic1-4
Sat 05 Apr 2008Hucknall Town0-3
Sat 29 Mar 2008Tamworth1-1
Mon 24 Mar 2008Harrogate Town0-1
Sat 22 Mar 2008Workington0-1
Goal Scorers
Taylor, Paul12
Field, Tom8
Heler, Peter5
Reed, Mark4
Garrity, Mike2
Previous Meetings
Saturday December 09, 2023
Tuesday January 21, 2020
Saturday March 15, 2014
Saturday November 16, 2013
Tuesday October 22, 2013
Home win Burscough2-0Sat 29th Dec
Away win Blyth Spartans0-2Sat 6th Oct
Home defeat Kettering Town0-6Sat 1st Mar
Away defeat Kettering Town6-0Sat 18th Aug
Home score Hyde United3-4Tue 19th Feb
Away score Hyde United6-3Mon 13th Aug
Games Since... Overall Home Away
Last Scored 241
Last Conceded 111
Last Won 646
Last Drew 111
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