Match Report -
Celtic collapse at Hinckley
By Iain Benson
For nearly an hour, Celtic dominated proceedings, and looked good for their lead, but a piece of poor defending gave Hinckley an inch and they took a mile.

Straight from the off, Celtic looked the more likely scorers, with Connor Jennings almost bursting through, but he was denied by good defending before Jody Banim brought the ball in from the corner flag, out muscled the defender to get into the box, with strikers lining up for the cross, Banim had other ideas, and smashed a curling shot into the back of the net from an impossible angle.

Jan Budtz kept the lead as Hinckley tried to find an instant reply, with save from Andre Grey that he spilled and recovered quickly from to keep out. Celtic kept possession well, although the Hinckley defence kept the Celtic front line at bay, despite some excellent build up play that was at times awesome, until Jennings popped up getting onto a Glenn Rule centred ball, but Dan Haystead made the save with a strong dive, so the teams went in with Celtic having a slight lead.

It looked like it would be more of the same in the second half as some intricate work at the edge of the box that saw Celtic scrap the ball through for Phil Marsh to go one-on-one with Haystead, and he did not disappoint, firing through Haystead's legs and put Celtic two to the good.

Celtic should have gone on to shut up shop, but some uncharacteristic defending on a corner, saw Connor Franklin unmarked at the back post to power a header into the net. Two minutes later and the home side were level, Strachan's initial shot could only be parried by Budtz, sitting up nicely for Gary King, who made no mistake despite Andy McWilliam's valiant effort on the line sliding in. The equaliser galvanised Hinckley, and they came at Celtic in wave after wave, with Budtz at full stretch to deny Andre Grey, before a harsh foul was given thirty yards out when Laquan Esdaille was barged into and Hinckley won the foul. James Reid took the free kick, and it did not look to be particular spectacular but a wicked deflection in the box sent it beyond the finger tips of Budtz and into the back of the net at a trickle. After Andre Grey put himself in harms way and ended up getting in injured, Gavin Strachan (though the goal has been given to King!) picked up the loose ball and gave Budtz no chance after he'd been across the face several times. Strachan did get accredited with a goal, after King's powerful shot was blocked by Budtz with a fine save it fell to Strachan who put it away with the Celtic defence all over the place.

Celtic just could not keep their shape or the ball under sustained Hinckley pressure, and Hinckley were deserved winners. Strong fortitude is now required as Celtic face perennial thorns Vauxhall on Tuesday night.

1Haystead, Dan  
2Mace, James  
3Mofley, Stephen  
4Roberts, Jack  
5Munday, Richard  > 14
6Franklin, Connor  
7Kerry, Lloyd  
8Strachan, Gavin  > 79
9King, Gary  
10Gray, Andre  > 70
11Reid, James  
12Fairclough, Ben  < 70
14Newton, Danny  
15Lister, Paul  < 14
16Blackwell, Jacob  < 79