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Match Preview :- Redditch United - Saturday August 8th, 2009 (15:00:00)
The season is back! And Celtic kick off with an away trip to one of our happy hunting grounds, Redditch United. At Redditch, Celtic have a one hundred percent record of wins, scoring fifteen goals and conceding four, with three clean sheets out of our last six visits there. After the pre-season friendlies, the season starts in earnest. This match will be covered by the Live Match Centre.

Redditch have been busy close season, and manager Gary Whild has brought in quite a few new faces in a busy summer, including the defensive pairing of Francino and Liam Francis, winger James Cooper, central midfielders Andy Ducross and David Bridgewater, plus others. Mark Hands is an injury doubt for Redditch ahead of the season opener, having missed pre-season.

Celtic?s signings include defender Steve Woods, midfielders Dave Hankin, Michael Carr and Warren Peyton, and forward Joe O?Neill. Having picked up a knock in the pre-season friendly against Macclesfield Town, Michael Carr sat out the Manchester City friendly on Tuesday night.

Redditch finished last season on a bit of a run, losing just three times in their last fifteen matches (and drawing four), and just once in their last seven as they struggled to stay in the Conference North, although this late run lifted them to a finishing position of fourteenth on fifty points, having won twelve, drawn fourteen and lost sixteen matches. They scored forty-nine goals, and conceded sixty-one. Their top goal scorer last season was Ryan Beswick, who scored eight.

Celtic finished last season also on a run, though we lost five in our last fifteen, we only drew twice, finishing sixth, six points off the play-off spots occupied by Southport and Telford. We finished with twenty wins, ten draws and twelve losses, having scored seventy-one goals, and conceding fifty, only Gateshead and Alfreton scored more than Celtic last season, and we had the seventh best defence in the league. Celtic?s top goal-scorer last season, with ten league goals, was Matty Barlow.

There is insufficient data for the automated prediction algorithm, and it?s playing safe with 0-0 draws across the board.

With the closure of junction 7 of the M56, travel to Redditch will involve a diversion, either through Altrincham or along the M62 to the M6 interchange there.
Distance: 114
Time: 2 hours and 10 minutes

From the M67 join the M60 towards Stockport.
After 7 miles, leave the M60 at Junction 4 (Chester, M6) to join the M56 Stay on the M56 for 7 miles, coming off at junction 7 (Northwich, M6) to join the A556.
The roundabout can be avoided by using the slip road.
Stay on the A556 for 5 miles to the roundabout with the M6.
Join the M6 southbound (Birmingham) avoiding the roundabout by using the slip road.
Stay on the M6 for 60 miles to junction 8 with the M5.
Join the M5.
Stay on the M5 for 16 miles to junction 4a with the M42.
Join the M42.
Stay on the M42 for 5 miles to junction 2 (Birmingham South) with the A441.
At the roundabout at the end of the slip road, turn right (exit 4 of 5) onto the A441.
After 2 miles you will reach a roundabout - continue straight (exit 1 of 3) to stay on the A441.
After a further 1 1/2 miles you will reach another roundabout - with a fire station on the right.
Turn almost back on yourself (exit 4 of 5) onto the B4184 (Windsor Road).
At the end of Windsor road (half a mile) there is a mini roundabout - turn left (exit 1 of 3 - signposted Hewel) onto Hewel Road.
Follow Windsor Road round, you will pass Colour Scope Carpets on your left and Redditch train station on your right.
Keep to the right to get onto Bromsgrove Road.
At the brow of the hill turn right onto Reds Drive (signposted Redditch United) by Hill View Surgery.
The car park is at the end of Reds Drive.

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