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Match Preview :- Frickley Athletic - Saturday September 30th, 2006 (15:00:00)
Celtic are back at home on Saturday when we welcome Frickley Athletic back to the Fold for the first time since the 2003/04 season when we beat them 5-0 in the Unibond Premier. This time we take them on in the FA Cup (kick off 3pm).

In previous meetings between the two teams Celtic have generally come out on top at Bower Fold, but struggled to get a result at Frickley. The last meeting saw Celtic record a 5-0 score line, after taking our first win at Frickley earlier in the season, winning 2-1 under the shadow of the slag-heap. In the past fifteen years, Frickley have won twice out of nine visits to the Fold, the last time being in 2000, when they got a 3-2 scoreline.

Frickley are currently sixteenth in the Unibond Premier, not quite living up to last season's performance when they narrowly missed out on promotion in the last week of the season, losing out to North Ferriby United on penalties in the semi-final of the promotion play offs. Frickley have already played in one round of the FA Cup, seeing off Whitby, at Whitby, 4-2 to set up this meeting.

Whitby are a bit of a recurring theme for Frickley this year. Their last away game last season was against them, a match they lost 2-0. This season they have met the seasiders three times already, beating them in the FA Cup, and twice in the league. Frickley have lost just twice on the road, firstly at Whitby in the league and secondly, in their last match, when they lost 5-1 at Guiseley. They have won just once at home, again to Whitby. They won their other two away matches, but they are seemingly unable to win at home, losing four matches.

On their travels they have beaten Gateshead, Martine, and drawn with Prescot Cables. They have conceded in every game (home and away), and failed to score in three matches, though they have scored in every match away from South Elmsall. It was a hattrick from Remo Nesa that won them their place in this round, but their top scorer is Alex Callery who has four goals. Hot on his heels is Rob Pell on three goals. On average, Frickley score two goals a game away from home (1.33 overall), whilst conceding 1.75 goals away from home (1.89 overall). Their most dangerous period for scoring is the last half an hour minutes of a match when they have scored nine of their sixteen goals, with only four scored in the first half. Conceding wise, they have conceded nine in the last half hour, but also conceded eight in the first half.

There are a number of familiar faces at Frickley at the moment, including goalkeeper Gary Ingham, and defender Lee Stratford. The acting-manager is Mark Ogley, whom older fans will remember pulling on Celtic blue. Also Aron Wilford has turned out for Frickley this season, appearing in their last FA Cup appearance. Ogley is the acting manager at the moment, because Frickley's manager Gary Marrow left to take up the managerial post at Grantham Town. How long Ogley will be in charge is in doubt, as it is rumoured that Marrow wants the former Celtic defender to join him at Grantham.

With no team posted for their 5-1 defeat away at Guiselet, in their previous match, the 2-1 defeat at home to former Conference North side, Hednesford Town, Frickley lined up as:
1. Gary Ingham
2. Chris Hilton
3. Lee Stratford
4. Lee Pugh
5. Calum Selby
6. Dean Jones
7. Alex Callery
8. Danny Walsh
9. Rob Pell
10. Mark Ward
11. Mark Crossfield

Celtic lined up in their 2-1 defeat away at Barrow as:
1. Paul Pettinger
2. Kev Parr
3. Scott Maxfield
4. Barrie Keeling
5. Mark Haran
6. Ashley Winn
7. Steve Brodie
8. Paul Sykes
9. Lee Ellington
10. Andy Parton
11. Neil Prince

Celtic need a morale booster after their recent away results, and though Frickley will be up for the win, Celtic should have enough about them to go through to the next round, but it will be no walkover. Frickley were a couple of points shy of joining the Conference North last season, and will want to prove their credentials. However, with no manager, the acting-manager looking likely to leave, and the chairman having stepped down, the off-field problems may be disrupting the on-field performances, and Celtic should try and capitalise on that.
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