The first half was fairly even, with Ellington getting the first shot on target only for Burke to deflect it wide with his arm for a corner that Celtic couldn?t convert. Ex-Celtic striker Banim burst past Maxfield and Sykes before attempting a cheeky lob over Pettinger that would have been the opening goal were it not for Flynn on the line heading it clear. After both sides had seen shots clear the bar, Maxfield conceded a corner that Jagielka got his head onto at the near post, forcing Pettinger into a reaction catch. Warner tried to catch Pettinger unawares with a thirty five low shot that the Celtic keeper caught comfortably.
Brodie could have notched one up against his former side as the first half came to a climax. He rode several challenges to get into the box, Robinson slid in and missed the ball giving Brodie the chance to take the shot, but with Phillips beaten, Burke stuck out a leg to divert the shot wide. From the corner Droylsden, it was cleared to Tandy who tried a forty-five yard shot that Pettinger got down to, but the ball squirted up out of his hands and Jagielka, who had followed the shot all the way into Pettinger?s hands, was on hand to stick it into the back of the net.
At the start of the second half, Brodie got into a good position and tried to lob Phillips, but the Droylsden keeper back-pedalled well and caught. Prince took on his Vaughan and beat him, pulling the ball across the box for Ellington. Ellington, close range, had the time to pick his shot, but Phillips guessed right and at full stretch kept his side in the lead with an excellent save. Prince and Brodie then interchanged as Droylsden struggled to clear the corner. Brodie tried to lift the ball to Ellington, but Phillips, who was well off his line and out of position, leapt through a crowd to catch the ball.
As with Celtic?s previously failed corner, Droylsden immediately counter-attacked and Jagielka saw his fierce drive parried away by Pettinger for a corner. Pettinger had to be alert again moments later after Banim did a mazy run avoiding three Celtic players and firing near post that Pettinger put around his post with his foot. Jagielka was again on the near post with a flick, and again Pettinger was there to stop. Morris tried a distant shot, but this time Pettinger kept hold of the ball.
Fearns burst into the box chased by Sykes, Sykes slid in and he claims that he got the ball, but Fearns went sprawling over Sykes?s leg and against Droylsden it?s always going to be a penalty. Fearns, who has scored several penalties already this season stepped up and put it into the right bottom corner.
Ellington received the ball near the penalty spot, and was swamped by defenders, somehow he dug it out and found Brodie coming into the box, the Celtic man placed a perfect curling shot that forced Phillips into a full stretch flying save to tip (only just) over his bar. Pettinger added to his repertoire of saves in the match with another good stop to deny a Banim spin and shot from the corner of the box. Ellington again held the ball up well at the other end, and as Winn came into the box, Ellington put the ball into his path, it was well struck, and only just over the bar. Prince then tried to find Brodie but nearly found Winn at the back post with a curling cross through a Droylsden devoid box, but Winn?s legs were too short. Burke brought down Ellington at the edge of the box, but Ellington?s free kick couldn?t clear the wall. Celtic?s goal came with the most blatant handball ever seen at Bower Fold. Burke leapt above Ellington and caught the ball with both hands. It was right on the edge of the box, and could have gone either way, it went Celtic?s way and Ellington smacked the penalty into the back of the net.
With five minutes left on the clock, Celtic did attack for the equaliser, but it was Banim who came closest to scoring on a break away he evaded Sykes before forcing Pettinger into another good save.
On the balance of play, Droylsden deserved the three points as they simply created more chances.