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Match Preview :- Stafford Rangers - Saturday February 14th, 2009 (15:00:00)
Celtic are on the road again this Saturday when we head into Staffordshire to face Stafford Rangers (kick off 3pm, there will be a match centre for this game). Stafford are currently twelfth in the league, five places and eight points behind Celtic having played three games more.

Stafford have imploded in recent weeks. They started the season strongly losing just twice in their opening thirteen matches (at home to Southport and Tamworth), but in their last thirteen matches they have won just three (Gainsborough home and away, and Telford away). Their previous solid defence that conceded about a goal a game in the opening period has seen them ship fifteen goals in their last seven games, although they did keep a clean sheet in their last match at home to Gainsborough.

They have kept eleven clean sheets throughout the season, six of them at home, including a run of five games without conceding between September and October, which still stands as a season record. They have failed to score in ten matches this season, eight of which were at home. This gives them an average of 0.9 goals per game (0.4 at home), and conceding 1.2 goals per game (a goal per game at home). Their top goal scorer is David McNiven with eight goals, a full five goals ahead of his closest rival for the golden boot in Tom Thorley on three. Their most dangerous period is around the twenty minute mark, when they have scored eight of their twenty-three goals, whilst the last fifteen is their most vulnerable, when they have conceded nine of their thirty-one conceded goals.

We met Stafford earlier in the season, when Celtic won one of their two home wins this season, beating Stafford 2-0. We have never won at Stafford, our best result a 2-2 draw back in November 1993 when both teams were in the Conference National, whereas Stafford have won three of our last five visits there. The automated prediction algorithm believes that this will be Celtic?s season, suggesting a 3-1 win for Celtic.

Stafford have a clean bill of health, and no players suspended for the forthcoming match. In their last match a 2-0 home win over Gainsborough, they lined up as:
1. Tim Sandercombe
2. Andre Francis
3. Jonathon Loukes
4. Tom Thorley
5. Wayne Daniel
6. Stuart Pierpoint
7. Chris Flynn
8. Jake Moult
9. David McNiven
10. Nick Wellecomme
11. Christian Millar
Celtic also have a clean bill of health, and no players suspended. In our last match, the 1-0 win over Harrogate Town, Celtic lined up as:
1. Paul Phillips
2. Ashley Woolliscroft
3. Rhys Meynell
4. Barrie Keeling
5. Terry Barwick
6. Paul Sykes
7. Steve Torpey
8. Richard Battersby
9. Alex Meechan
10. Nathan Joynes
11. Andy Smart

Celtic are just one point adrift of the play off zone, and are currently capable of catching Gateshead and Alfreton in the top five, and with games in hand, we are not that far behind Tamworth and Telford. A win is vital if we are to maintain our promotion aspirations. It is very tight at both ends of the table.

Other games on Saturday (weather permitting):
Blyth Spartans (19th, 22pts) v Droylsden (10th, 35pts)
Burscough (21st, 21pts) v Gateshead (2nd, 50pts)
Farsley Celtic (13th, 31pts) v Alfreton Town (5th, 41pts)
Fleetwood Town (15th, 29pts) v Redditch United (17th, 26pts)
Harrogate Town (6th, 41pts) v Solihull Moors (18th, 24pts)
Hinckley United (9th, 35pts) v Gainsborough Trinity (8th, 26pts)
Hyde United (20th, 22pts) v Hucknall Town (22nd, 20pts)
King?s Lynn (14th, 31pts) v Southport (3rd, 48pts)
Vauxhall Motors (11th, 32pts) v Tamworth (1st, 51pts)
Workington (16th, 27pts) v AFC Telford United (4th, 48pts)
P Pts
12 Kings Lynn 28 32
13 Fleetwood Town 24 32
14 Stafford Rangers 27 32
15 Farsley Celtic 24 31
16 Workington 24 30
Sat 14 Feb 2009Stalybridge Celtic0-1
Sat 31 Jan 2009Gainsborough Trinity2-0
Tue 27 Jan 2009Hucknall Town1-3
Sat 24 Jan 2009Harrogate Town3-3
Sat 17 Jan 2009Burscough0-2
Goal Scorers
McNiven, David8
Thorley, Tom3
Flynn, Chris2
Phillips, Jimmy2
Miller, Christian2
Previous Meetings
Saturday February 08, 2020
Tuesday October 15, 2019
Saturday December 08, 2018
Saturday September 01, 2018
Saturday February 24, 2018
Home win Gainsborough Trinity2-0Sat 31st Jan
Away win Gainsborough Trinity0-3Sat 8th Nov
Home defeat Southport0-3Sat 30th Aug
Away defeat Farsley Celtic4-0Sat 20th Dec
Home score AFC Telford1-3Fri 26th Dec
Away score Harrogate Town3-3Sat 24th Jan
Games Since... Overall Home Away
Last Scored 111
Last Conceded 221
Last Won 113
Last Drew 221
Distance: 68
Time: 1 hour and 20 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 38 miles to junction 14 with the A34 (Stafford).
At the roundabout at the bottom of the slip road, turn left exit 1 of 5 onto the A34 (signposted Uttoxeter).
After 3/4 of a mile there is a roundabout - go straight across (exit 2 of 4) to join the A513 (Beaconside).
After 1/2 a mile, take the third right (immediate next right after the first left onto Marston Lane) onto Common Road.
The club is one mile down Common Road opposite the Audi garage.

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