Match Preview :- Bradford Park Avenue - Saturday September 25th, 2004 (3:00PM)
On Saturday the 25th of September, Bradford Park Avenue will be the visitors at Bower Fold for this bottom of the table clash (Kick off 3pm). For both teams this is a must win game.

Bradford were one of the pre-season favourites for the drop and they have been living up to that promise with one win out of their past 11 games. With just four draws as well, they are two points adrift in the relegation zone in 21st place. They are coming into this game on the back of three straight losses, two of them at home. They have had a creditable win against Stafford at the Horsfall Stadium, and an even more creditable 3-3 draw away at Droylsden. In other words, their results belie their ability ? now where have we seen that before?

In their past four games, they have scored just one goal, and conceded four, though they have scored 11 goals this season. With their top scorer Dan Sheriffe back in the team, they are hoping to reverse this trend, no doubt. They have conceded 15 goals 7 of them away from home. Away from home they score an average of a goal per game and concede 1.4, a ratio not much improved for their home matches.

Across the league as a whole, Bradford are enduring the longest run without a win (4 games) and the longest goal drought (2 games), but they do have one of the best defences in the league.

Previous meetings between the two sides tilt slightly in Celtic?s favour, with two wins (one of our few six pointers) last season, and a draw and a loss the season before, with Bradford earning the draw thanks to a Danny Hooper own goal.

Celtic have won at home this season, though the manner of the win may have been unpalatable, it was still a win. Our last game, away at Nuneaton, was a loss; though in losing there was an improvement in performance. Hopefully the performance and the result can come together on Saturday, improving everybody?s morale. Celtic have yet to fail to score at home, though they are also yet to keep a clean sheet. Indeed, Celtic have only kept one league clean sheet all season. Hopefully, Andy Hayward will be adding to his one goal so far this season with another against his former club.

Bradford have brought in a loan player recently, midfielder Phillip Reilly from Stockport County, but he had an inauspicious start and is unlikely to be playing, replaced instead by Garreth Clayton. With the return of Dan Sheriffe, their line up is looking stronger than many that they have fielded in this campaign so far.

1. Andy Britton
2. Andrew Quinn
3. Ben Cressey
4. Danny Walsh
5. Dean Jones
6. Ryan Crossley
7. Dan Sheriffe
8. Marc Thompson
9. Ben Jones
10. Karl Colley
11. Garreth Clayton

Given the strength of the defence against Nuneaton, Celtic may well be experimenting again with Paul Sykes in the back line up (he was originally a defender, after all), and playing their preferred home formation of 4-3-3

1. Craig Dootson
2. Dave German
3. Tony Whealing
4. Barrie Keeling
5. Paul Sykes
6. Nathan Wharton
7. Ben Smith
8. Kevin Parr
9. Andy Hayward
10. Chris Denham
11. David Moores

The prediction algorithm is predicting a rare win for Celtic (1-0), and a win could push us as high as 16th, continuing the improvement seen over recent games. This is a must-win should-win game for Celtic. Failure is not an option and we?ll need to take any chances that Bradford?s mean defence allow.
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