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MATCH REPORT Bradford Park Avenue 0-1 Stalybridge Celtic
Monday 31st October 2016 @ 11:39 by Mark Phillip
Football Sports Stalybridge

By Shaun Bishop

Celtic gave themselves a massive boost in their relegation battle with an excellent display at fellow strugglers Bradford PA on Saturday. With well over 100 Celtic fans making the trip over to Yorkshire the fantastic support certainly seemed to spur the players on as straight from the off they were the better of the sides.

The game from a neutral point of view wouldn’t have made it first on Match Of The Day mainly due to a pretty horrendous surface. But what was lacking in quality was made up for in a full on gusty performance from Celtic who harried their opponents and won nearly every 50-50 challenge all afternoon. Chances were few and far between but Chippendale did clip the post and Matty Hughes headed narrowly wide from a corner. Celtic thought they should have had a nailed on penalty when Andy Owens was up ended after getting on the end of a fine quick clearance from debutant keeper Grant Shenton. However the appeals were waved away.

The all important winner came early in the second half. Scott Spencer off the bench only minutes earlier had a shot cleared off the line only for the ball to fall to Gary Gee who stroked the ball home. No more than Celtic deserved. Celtic could have had the game sealed early and Gee again came close after riffling an effort only to see Worsnop save well.

Josh Hine showed some fancy footwork as he beat two men but couldn’t quite bury his chance from a narrow angle. As the game edged towards the final minutes Bradford threw everything they could at Celtic. But Hughes and Wisdom were simply impenetrable and accompanied by Mather and Morton at the back Celtic didn’t look like conceding and that is exactly what happened. Celtic claimed a vital three points that sees them rise two places and now breathing down the necks of local rivals Curzon in the relegation scrap. Managers Paul Phillips and Steve Halford both expressed their gratitude to the travelling support after the game. Smiles on the faces of all connected with Celtic.