Match Report -
Celtic end the season on a high
By Iain Benson

Celtic finished the 2012/13 season with a great win over promotion chasing Halifax despite playing for seventy minutes with ten men after a rash challenge from Callum Warburton on former Celtic winger Osebi Abadaki.

Celtic and Halifax both started brightly, Tom Buckley having an early shot whilst Jon Worthington fired over from a corner. Kristian Platt followed suit, putting his effort from a corner over the bar before stand-in keeper, Jordan Barrow, made the first save just past the quarter hour mark, as Worthington’s weak effort was scooped up.

Warburton’s sending off came during a foray up the wing by Abadaki, sliding in with both feet, the crack audible across the stadium, and Warburton seeing an instant red. However, it didn’t seem to alter the balance of play, and Celtic kept up the pressure across the field on Halifax. That pressure told ten minutes later when a visionary ball from Adam Pepper unlocked the Halifax back line, a back line that had conceded just thirty-seven goals all season. Mitchell Austin ran onto the pinpoint pass straight past the Adam Jackson to go one-on-one with Phil Senior. He took one touch to steady himself and a second to slot low past Senior to open the scoring.

Pepper could have added to the tally moments later when he was put through by Buckley, but he tried to round Senior, who saved well at Pepper’s feet. As the half wore on, Halifax looked increasingly desperate, shooting from distance, unable to break down the resolute Celtic defence. When they did break through, neither Sean Williams nor Gareth Seddon’s shots were anything to write home about; Barrow coping exceedingly well with both.

The second half saw Halifax try and try to break down Celtic. Still forced into shooting from distance, legs, heads and bodies were put in the way to protect Barrow, resulting in Halifax having a whole series of corners that they defended well. An hour into the match, and Barrow was really tested by a screamer from Williams, forcing the Celtic man to leap to the top corner and parry the shot away, Joel Bembo-Leta coming in to clear the loose ball. Substitutes Matty Pearson and Chris Worsely both found space for shots, but couldn’t get them on target as the Celtic back line, strengthened by Johnny Lindsay and Dillon O’Connor, held firm, meaning Celtic finished twelfth, with an unbeaten streak of nine games, losing just twice in the last fifteen matches, conceding just seven goals in the last ten and keeping 5 clean sheets. Not bad for a team written off in February.

1Senior, Phil  
2Toulson, Ryan  
3StJuste, Jason  
4Hogan, LiamYellow Card > 65
5Jackson, Adam  
6Needham, Liam  
7Abadaki, Osebi  > 45
8Worthington, Jon  
9Glover, Danny  
10Wiliams, Sean  
11Seddon, Gareth  > 62
12Glennon, Matt  
14Johnson, Alex  < 62
16Pearson, Matty  < 65
17Worsley, Chris  < 45
Match Sponsor
Sunlight Services
Ball Sponsor
Sterling Racing/Stanley Square Conservative Club
Man of the Match Sponsor
Dee Hughes
Programme Sponsor
DVH Builders
Sponsors
Site Sponsor
Football Accumulators - Official Site Sponsors of Stalybridge Celtic
Site Sponsor
MG Domestic - Official Site Sponsors of Stalybridge Celtic
Main club sponsor
Works4U Official Shirt Sponsors of Stalybridge Celtic