Celtic battered Gloucester at times, but two calamitous errors meant Gloucester walked away with a share of the spoils, ending Celtic's one hundred percent record at home this season, and our on hundred percent record against Gloucester.
Celtic started the stronger with Connor Jennings stinging the young Gloucester keeper's palms in the first exchange, but good defending saw the resulting corner cleared at the second attempt before the ball came to Greg Wilkinson but his lobbed shot over the defence was bread and butter for Lewis Carery. Rhys Meynell fired in low at the near post which Carery did well to stop.
A route one goal undid Celtic. Carery's long punt bounced over Lynch, then bounced over Meynell letting Will Morford run one-on-one with Jan Budtz. Budtz made himself big but Morford's strike was crisp leaving Budtz with little chance.
Carery kept his side in the lead with a great stop when Mike Green's suicidal back pass was intercepted by Jennings, who turned and shot at target and Carery reacted to palm the ball away. The save lifted Gloucester and they had a good spell, Morford firing into Budtz's arms and the Celtic keeper had perfect positioning to deny Darren Mullings header. Budtz followed this up with a great reaction save from Darren Edwards.
Celtic finished the half the stronger though, with some clean crisp passing creating some half chances before the perfect chance fell to Lloyd Ellams, twenty-fiove yards out, and he put in a contender for goal of the season with a dipping, swerving shot that had Carery grasping air to put Celtic back on terms.
There was still time in the half fro Ellams to have a rasping drive blocked by a sliding Mike Green.
The second period saw Celtic look on top without being able to find the final telling ball that would have put Celtic in the lead, until Callum Warburton sent Ellams on a run towards the Gloucester goal, he dodged one nasty looking challenge before sliding the ball through to Connor Jennings coming in on the diagonal, Jennings's first touch gave him the space to curl a textbook shot up and over Carey and put Celtic in the lead.
With Hyde currently a goal behind at Eastwood, Celtic were topping the table by a point, but Celtic really needed a third to make sure of seeing Gloucester off. Marsh went incredibly close, and Ellams saw his shot along the floor scooped up by Carey before Jennings ran in onto Hobson's through ball and some how lifted the ball over the bar.
Cue calamity number two.
Adam Kay, on for Warburton, was the end of the chain of dallying and almost wayward passing when he tried to pass to Hobson surrounded by three Gloucester players, allowing Mullings to intercept and launch the ball forward for substitute Steve Davies to chase. Budtz started to come as Lynch caught up to Davies, sending the Celtic keeper backtracking towards his goal, but he was in no-man's land as Davies reached the ball a fraction of a inch ahead of Lynch and lobbed Budtz first time to restore parity to the visitors.
The last fifteen minutes was almost relentless attack from Celtic, with heroic defending and goalkeeping from the visitors keeping the point. Jack Rea's blasted effort central was blocked by Matt Coupe, and Lloyd Ellams's curling effort was well read by Carey. Hobson fired point blank at Carery as time started to run out for Celtic. Wilkinson's low drive was put narrowly around his own post by Jack Harris, and Ellams was through with only Carey to beat but Carey's reaction stop with his foot earned the visitors a point in a dramatic finish.
With Hyde managing to snatch a stoppage time equaliser, Celtic remain two points behind our neighbours, with both still unbeaten.
|2||Green, Mike||> 45|
|3||Rawlings, Sam||> 59|
|6||Harris, Jake||> 55|
|12||Weir, Tyler||< 59|
|15||Harris, Jack||< 45|
|16||Davies, Steve||< 55|