Celtic deserved at the very least a point out of this game, but a late goal from perennial thorn in our side, Danny Glover, gave Hednesford all three points.
Celtic were slow out of the blocks, and Hednesford had the upper hand in the opening periods, Danny Glover not connecting with a low cross, and scuffing the ball into Joe Slinn’s hands. However, six minutes later, and James Fitzgibbons latched onto a long diagonal cross. Slinn came to try and collect at Fitzgibbon’s feet, but missed, allowing the Hednesford striker to roll the ball into the back of the net.
Celtic almost grabbed an equaliser during a corner when the home team’s defence were overwhelmed. Matty Wolfenden got to the back post, his close range header was denied by a top drawer save from James Wren, flying across and one-handed palming the ball back out as far as Oliver Roberts who cracked his shot first time, the ball crashing back off the bar, coming to Luke Ashworth who lashed in his shot at the first attempt, relieving the pressure on the home defence as it flew wide.
The second half saw Celtic continue to improve, pushing Hednesford back towards their own box. It felt like an equaliser was coming, and it came through Connor Hughes’s pace, racing to the by-line and pulling the ball back for Oli Roberts who pulled off a fabulous curling shot that looped over Wren into the top corner.
The home side should have gone back in front within two minutes after Slinn pulled off a great save to deny Glover, the ball falling for James Lawrie, but the substitute screwed his shot horribly wide. Minutes after this and Celtic should have taken the lead, when Hughes raced in from the wing on a curving run, Wren pulling off his second outstanding save of the match, the ball flying across the face of goal to Liam Dickinson at the back post, who went to turn the ball in at the back post, only for Darren Campion to come sliding in and deny Dickinson on the line.
Celtic continued to mount increasing pressure, and with the game heading towards the final whistle, Celtic looked the more likely to go on and win, especially when Hughes was bearing down on goal, only for Campion to risk a red card, sliding recklessly in to send the Celtic winger flying at the edge off the box. Dickinson took the free kick, curling it around the wall and inches wide of the post.
Celtic were made to pay for that miss, two minutes into three of stoppage time, when Danny Glover tried his luck from thirty-five yards out when he saw an alley to fire down. Slinn saw it coming all the way, and though he got a hand to the shot, he couldn’t keep it out, and Hednesford gave Celtic a kick in the teeth after they’d clawed their way back into the game and looked more likely to go onto win.
|7||King, Reece||> 44|
|9||Graham, Jordan||> 90|
|12||Lawrie, James||< 44|
|15||Hatter, Charlie||< 90|