Lambs fall to home defeat by Celtic
12 August 2008
On the back of an opening day point at Droylsden, Gary Mills selected the same starting eleven to face Steve Burr’s Celtic who also picked up a point against AFC Telford at the weekend.
Both sides started slowly until the 4th minute when a good run by Wright down the right won a corner for The Lambs.
Rodman won another flag kick on 7 but Celtic cleared and Tamworth tried to step up a gear.
However, Steve Torpey unleashed a right footed drive on 10 which swerved as it flew towards goal and Puddy escaped an early goal against as the ball slipped off his fingertips and over the bar.
Puddy came out to meet a long freekick from Paul Sykes on 13 but failed to collect and Langdon cleared with an outstretched toe as the visiting attack tried to get a quick shot away.
Tamworth were looking hungry but were unable to produce in the final third. Wright and Pritchard linked up well on 20 only to see their efforts quashed by the Celtic defence and on 21 Stalybridge won a freekick on the right about 20 yards from goal.
Tamworth broke from the deadball and Pritchard got into a good position from Sheldon’s pass on the right and won a corner.
McAughtrie forced Paul Phillips to tip his looping header onto the bar from the flag kick and Sheldon’s shot as the ball dropped was cleared off the line by Danny Wood.
Smith took a knock when he clashed with Torpey midway inside his own half and needed lengthy treatment as the substitutes warmed up culminating in Des Lyttle coming on to replace on him just past the half hour mark.
Pritchard went close with a dinked chip on 36 which rebounded off him after the keeper saved low in the left of the area and on 38 Sheldon chipped into the path of Hildreth, but the number 8 couldn’t get enough power on his header to beat Phillips.
The visitors took the lead though with 4 remaining in the first half. Nathan Joynes finished from close range after Torpey’s initial shot from Lee Ellington’s left wing cross was deflected into his path by McAughtrie’s attempted block. (0-1) and for all Tamworth’s effort’s they ended the first half a goal down.
After the break The Lambs were quickest out of the blocks and pushed for an early equaliser but still found trouble finishing off moves forward and creating chances.
On 56 Wright almost latched onto a slightly wayward back pass from Ashley Wooliscroft and Phillips gathered the ball at chest height as Wright looked to tap home the equaliser.
Chris Williams ran the ball out of his own half and sent Danny Wood free on the left with an hour gone. Wood though, couldn’t get his long range shot on target and flashed the ball past yards the far post for Celtic.
On 62 Foster lost the ball on the half way line and a very well struck effort Terry Barwick from fully 35 yards flew into the net, giving Puddy no chance, doubling the visitors lead. (0-2)
McAughtrie attempted a swivelling volley on the right of the area on 68 which Phillips was equal to before Sheridan came into the fray on the right wing for Hildreth and a blasting right footed drive from Rodman on 76 smacked against the far upright as Tamworth’s almost magnetic draw towards the ‘woodwork’ unfortunately continued.
But it was soon 3-0 to Stalybridge when, on 81, Ellington was allowed time to turn on the ball on the left of the area and smashed home the chance.
From a Lambs corner on 85 Rodman chipped to Wright who flicked his header into the arms of Phillips and despite keeping control of the ball for long periods Stalybridge were not to be broken.
Puddy, Smith (Lyttle 31), Langdon, McAughtrie, Wylde, Foster, Wright, Hildreth (Sheridan 68), Sheldon, Rodman, Pritchard
Subs: Lea, Warburton, Law
Stalybridge Celtic Team:
Phillips, Wooliscroft, Wood, Keeling, Barwick, Sykes, Torpey (Meynall 78), Briggs, Ellington, Joynes (Barlow 75), Williams (Platt 84)
Subs: Wilkinson, Burke
Referee: Mr. I Dudley (Mansfield)