THE LOWDOWN: Boston United v Stalybridge Celtic

Lewis King.
Lewis King.

Boston United prepare to host Stalybridge Celtic this afternoon... hoping that a new goalscorer is about to step forward.

The Pilgrims drew 3-3 at Bower Fold last season, before defeating the Celtic 4-1 at York Street.

However, of the six Pilgrims who, between them, scored those seven goals, not one of them will be available today.

Ian Ross, Ben Fairclough, Netan Sansara, Spencer Weir-Daley and Ben Milnes, who netted twice, have all moved on from the Jakemans Stadium.

Marc Newsham, the only remaining Pilgrims to have scored against Stalybridge last season, remains on the injury list, along with midfielder Jay Dowie.

However, history suggests that Boston are in no danger of being defeated by the Celtic.

In their past six meetings at York Street, stemming all the way back to the 2001-02 season, the Pilgrims have won five times and drawn once.

Last season’s 4-1 win was preceded by a 2-2 draw in the 2012-13 campaign.

Prior to that, United earned victories in 2011-12 (3-2), 2010-11 (1-0), 2007-08 (3-1) and 2001-02 (4-1) - that 2001-02 season seeing United earn promotion to the Football league, while Stalybridge were relegated from the Conference.

This season’s early indications aren’t favourable for the away side either.

Despite picking up seven points from their opening five matches, only one point has come away from Bower Fold.

An opening day 2-2 draw at Worcester City was followed up by a 2-0 reverse at Chorley.

United, meanwhile, have won one of their two home matches, defeating Barrow 2-1 but losing 1-0 to North Ferriby.

From the past 12 meetings between today’s opponents, Boston have won six times, drawn twice and been beaten on four occasions.

United have netted 23 times, only failing to score twice.

Stalybridge have netted 21 times and also failed to score twice.

The man attempting top keep Celtic’s first clean sheet at York Street in this time frame is Lewis King, who opted to leave Boston in the summer.

Kick off will be at 3pm.