With Jack Rea out for six to eight weeks, Callum Warburton got the nod to start, and had a solid performance in the centre of the park, putting in some excellent early crosses with Brandon Cardwell on his toes to clear them. From a free kick deep in their own half, Buxton spread the ball long to Neil Torwey who swung a super cross in for frontman Keiron Lugdsen. Lugdsen got in betwee Kristian Platt and Jan Budtz to nod in the opening goal. Celtic almost hit back immediately, with Cardwell heading narrowly passed his own post for a corner that Buxton struggled to clear, eventually falling for Arthur Gnahoua who blasted across the face of goal and wide.
Buxton were playing tidy football, and a good move saw the move the ball quickly, with Sam Liversidge finding David Taylor to have a crack, only for the ball to be charged down by Kristian Platt, the loose ball coming out to Lugdsen who finished well to put the visitors two up. Again Celtic hit back, at times looking like they wanted to walk the ball home, but Craig Hobson’s rocket was well saved by Scott Hartley and it was Hobson who got onto the flicked corner, putting his header just over the bar. Celtic finished the half the stronger, with Adam Kay firing just the wrong side of the post, and Greg Wilkinson making space after a mazy run to fire narrowly wide across the face with Hartley rooted to his line.
Celtic increased their endeavours in the second half and got their reward immediately as Budtz’s long route one punt was lifted over the advancing Hartley and in under the bar. Celtic kept coming, and Marsh saw Liversidge charge his powerful shot down and Gnahoua was likewise thwarted. Kay relieved the pressure as his shot from the edge of the box fizzed over the bar, but the Celtic pressure was almost constant. Gnahoua’s shot flashed wide, after some good work by substitute Connor Jennings (on for the bruised Phil Marsh). The Jennings Gnahoua combination was at work again moments later, Jennings finding Gnahoua whose shot was charged down by Scott Maxfield, falling to Greg Wilkinson at the edge of the box who wrapped his foot around the ball and it fairly flew into the back of the net past Hartley.
Seconds later and Jennings burst past the defence and fired hard over the advancing Hartley only for his shot to set the bar rattling, and Hobson brought a cleated corner back in forcing Hartley into a full stretch save. Jennings headed the resulting corner over the bar, before Buxton had a rare break, looking lively, with Sammy Johnson causing problems for Andy McWilliams, before firing into the side netting.
Celtic took a deserved lead. Scott Maxfield bringing down Connor Jennings right on the edge of the box. The assistant flagged for a foul, and the referee decided it was inside the box. Jennings took the penalty and didn’t fall for the keeper’s mind games as he fired home.
With a few minutes remaining on the clock, Mitchell Austin raced into the box and forced Hartley into yet another good stop, the loose ball causing chaos in the Buxton box, before Jennings cut the ball back into the danger area for Dennis Sheriff to flick past Hartley. After Gnahoua again kept Hartley busy, Jennings and Sheriff tried the same trick that led to Sheriff’s goal, only for Sheriff to flick the ball too far and leave the score at 4-2 at the final whistle.
|8||Torwey, Michael||> 45|
|11||Parry, Matt||> 46|
|14||Ovington, Chris||< 46|
|16||Cross, Jack||< 45|