The early chances were all Celtic?s way as they attacked from the off, pushing Gainsborough onto the back foot, Jody Banim getting half a yard for a shot, but skimming it wide of the far post, before new signing Lee Dodgson cut inside, one-two with Joe O?Neil and forced a save from Phil Barnes in the visiting goals. O?Neill went close with his effort from an acute angle after fine build up play and Banim saw a stuck out leg from Anthony Peters deflect his shot over the bar. A wonderful effort from Warren Peyton took a little deflection making Barnes?s tip over all the more impressive, and it seemed a Celtic goal was just a matter of time. It came with Dave Hankin flicking the ball into the path of Joe O?Neill who got a yard of space and perfectly placed his shot between keeper and post to put Celtic in front.
Moments later and it was two, as Banim ran onto Michael Carr?s flicked header and chased by Peters waited and waited until Barnes was committed and stroked the ball past him. It could have been three almost from the restart when O?Neill forced Barnes into another fine stop as Celtic looked rampant. A near miss from perennial thorn in the side of Celtic, Luke Beckett signalled a better period from the visitors, and after Ashley Burbeary fed Lewis McMahon who forced Dave Carnell into his first save of the afternoon, it was Beckett who was at the back post to tap in right before half time.
Gainsborough started the second half full of confidence, and Celtic were chasing shadows, and Sam Aiston found himself with the time and space to curl his shot into the top corner with Dave Carnell rooted to the spot as the ball few in from twenty-five yards for a well taken equaliser.
Carnell kept Celtic in the game with a great stop from Darren Dunning?s corner of the box effort and then an even better stop from close range off Luke Beckett. Just past the hour mark, and Jim Harvey made a couple of substitutions that injected life back into the Celtic side, Craig Hobson and Greg Wilkinson replaced the wingers Hankin and Dodgson. Carr and Hobson linked up to set up Wilkinson who struck a sweet strike that whizzed inches past the upright before Hobson forced Barnes into a great stop, his flicked header destined for the bottom corner until the Trinity keeper got across. Wilkinson got even closer with his next effort, put through by Banim he curled it almost past Barnes, but the merest of fingertips from Barnes put it over the bar. From the corner, O?Neill tried to turn it into the goal but a combination of Barnes and Peat kept the ball from crossing the line the ball coming to Banim who tried to place it in the bottom corner, but Barnes recovered well to make the double save.
Craig Hobson got his head on a Wilkinson cross, but again Barnes denied him as the Celtic pressure just kept mounting, and Peyton found the space from a Carr lay off but put his skimming shot the wrong side of the post. Connor Jennings replaced Joe O?Neill in Jim Harvey?s final roll of the dice, and he immediately set about making a nuisance of himself.
As injury time began, Hobson chased down a long punt from Carnell under pressure from Ryan Toulson, but he left Toulson on the floor before firing in a mid-height cross that Banim was running onto, but Barnes palmed the cross away. It fell to Connor Jennings, six yards out he had the composure to lift the ball over Barnes and give Celtic the lead with only seconds left on the clock. There was just enough time for Darryn Stamp to try and equalise with a distance effort, but he curled it the wrong way from distance and all three points were Celtic?s.
|4||Greaves, Mark||> 45|
|5||Peters, Anthony||> 46|
|9||McMahon, Lewis||> 85|
|12||Stamp, Darryn||< 85|
|15||Semple, Ryan||< 45|
|16||Davies, Joshua||< 46|