When the two teams met at the New Bucks Head at the start of the season, only an outstanding goalkeeping display denied a rampaging Telford side a cricket score victory. At Bower Fold it was a different story, with only the traditionally gifted goal separating the two teams in the first half.
The gifted goal came early on, from long throw, Matty McGinn launching the ball to the penalty spot, where Andy Owens used his strength to hold off Danny Rowe, turn and fire under Danny East. The Celtic keeper tried to get down, but couldn't get down fast enough. From there on in, Celtic were chasing the game against the second best defence in the league.
It was nearly two from another set piece routine, a corner flicked to the back post but East pulled off a reaction point blank save to deny Mike Grogan. Celtic went close a couple of times, Jack Ryan the closes, firing diagonally across the face but the wrong side of the post, after some good work, but Telford are top of the table for a reason, and they kept Celtic at bay, often illegally. They were dangerous from set pieces, as they showed when Adam Farrell sent a rocket of a free kick from forty yards that East had to scramble across for, though he made the save look comfortable, and he was in exactly the right place when Mike Grogan fired in another a few minutes later. Paul Ennis went close after darting through onto Sean McConville's lifted ball, but his low driven shot was the wrong side of the far post, and the roles were reversed putting McConville in on Ryan Young, but the shot lacked the power to trouble Young.
The second half saw Celtic start well enough, but fade. Some fine work down the right flank set McConville into the box, but the ball sat up on him as he made his shot, and it allowed Young to make a great save, clawing the ball out of the air.
Telford probably put the game to bed with their second and it was made by a peach of a cross from Matty McGinn, curling away from East and over the defenders, Andy Owens got the merest of contact to it, to divert it into the top corner. Celtic then had East to thank for Telford not going on a rampage, as they settled into their two goal cushion. A superb strike from Mike Grogan was parried away by East, and as Celtic struggled to clear, the ball came back across for Mike Phenic, who forced another stop from East he had nop right to get to. From the corner, Simon Grand got his head on the ball, but again found East in the way.
After weathering the storm, Celtic tried to claw one back, throwing Liam Dickinson on for his home debut. Almost immediayely he haded one wide, before fouling Grogan on the back post from a corner, and nodded a ball over ther bar. Elsewhere, Josh Green also went close with a dipping effort, and at the other end Adam Farrell went closeexploiting the holes at the back. Telford were worth their win, only in that Celtic lacked the teeth to fully exploit their possession. This has allowed Glocester to overtake Celtic on goal difference, pushing us into the bottom three, and not knowing where a win could come from.
|5||Preston, Dan||> 45|
|7||Whalley, Shaun||> 42|
|9||Owens, Andy||> 81|
|14||Moogan, Alan||< 45|
|15||Phenix, Mike||< 42|
|16||Gray, Tony||< 81|