Match Report -
The referee's decision is final. Wrong, but final.
By Keith Trudgeon

Celtic were dumped out the Trophy courtesy of a goal which, in my opinion, should never have been allowed to stand. But the referee's decision is final, no matter how wrong and now Celtic must console themselves by gaining a respectable position in the league - the only competition we are still in.

Both sides started brightly and it looked like we were going to be in for a real treat with chances falling to both sides in the opening few minutes, the best of which went to Worcester's No.9 Mark Owen, whose 20-yard effort was deflected just wide.

Celtic looked like they had finally got their act together after the recent defeats. They looked refreshed and there was a purpose to their play again - some of the passing in the first half was exemplary.

But the goal on 27 minutes knocked the stuffing out of Celtic especially given its controversial nature. When Bradley Sandeman's right-wing cross seemed to have been safely gathered by Gary Ingham, in came Sam Bowen to head it out of his hands and into the back of the net. The referee saw nothing wrong and gave the goal.

Credit to Celtic, they didn't give up and the second half produced a number of chances for the home side. Winfield Steele was a handful for the visitors with his pace and trickery and Celtic's midfield battled hard, particularly Kevin Parr who wasted two good chances for Celtic, both times blasting over from just outside the area.

When Tony Sullivan was brought on, Celtic looked even more dangerous and an equaliser seemed more and more inevitable. 'Tino' caused havoc down the right flank, and Johnston and Steele should both have done better when they each headed over a Sullivan cross from close range.

But it wasn't to be and in the end Celtic succumbed to a well organised Worcester side. We can now all look forward to Celtic mounting a serious challenge on Leigh and Marine at the league's summit - the latter of which we face at Bower Fold next Saturday.

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