Like a rocket on Bonfire night, the derby against Droylsden had a slow burn and then exploded.
The start of the game was well contested, played in the right way and end to end. Ex Celtic midfielder Warren Peyton saw a half chance on the turn a straightforward if not easy catch, whilst at the other end, Paul Phillips climbed over Nat Kerr dropping an Andy McWilliams cross at the feet of Connor Jennings who finished from a difficult angle only to be told he had fouled Phillips, much to his amazement. Phil Marsh got on a half cleared free kick, forcing Phillips into a high catch and Jennings fired into Phillips midriff. Budtz was equally busy, going down to snatch a Danny Rowe low drive.
Slowly Celtic looked to be getting on top and when Greg Wilkinson rode a challenge before sending a lobbed ball over a flat footed Droylsden defence for Connor Jennings to chase, and go one-on-one with Phillips, there was only going to be one result, and a perfect finish from Jennings put Celtic into a one goal lead at half time.
The second half saw Phillips facing into a low sun, and Celtic took full advantage, Steve Brogan powering past the Droylsden defence before pulling the ball back for Lloyd Ellams to curl past the outstretched fingers of Phillips.
That two goal lead lasted all of a minute, with Dan Gardner getting onto an inch perfect Dale Johnson cross and halving the deficit.
Celtic still looked to be the more likely to score, despite a Droylsden free kick causing Budtz a few problems. Jennings twice went close, both times Phillips was on hand, but he was helpless when a powerful run from Joel Bembo-Leta took him into the box, as Phillips came out, Bembo-Leta put the ball sideways into the path of the overlapping Steve Brogan who finished low and hard.
Celtic were on top until a flare was thrown onto the pitch, when Phillips reacted angrily throwing the flare at the crowd he left the referee with little choice but to send him off. At the other end, a firework was thrown at Budtz, leaving the Celtic keeper shaken. Droylsden re-organised, and decided the best form of defence and went at Celtic with a riled-up passion and increasing pressure. It paid dividends straight away, Carlos Logan putting a curling cross into the box that nobody got onto the end of and it found its way into the back of the net.
Droylsden were only a goal behind again, and playing like they had twelve men not ten. Gardener’s distance effort and Rowe’s close range effort gave Celtic a warning as they were pushed further back. It was only a matter of time before Droylsden equalised and Danny Rowe finished off concerted pressure from the home side levelling the scores.
With six minutes of stoppage time to be played Celtic have Jan Budtz to thank for taking at least a point from the game, as Dale Johnson from close range tried to turn in Carlos Logan’s cross, but somehow Budtz got in the way and Celtic came away with a draw.
|2||Vaughan, James||> 64|
|4||Brown, Chris||> 57|
|6||Peyton, Warren||> 57|
|14||Langford, Andy||< 57|
|15||Hall, Steve||< 57|
|17||Lake, Sean||< 64|