Slough beaten by single goal at Kettering
Date: Saturday, March 26th 2016 | Competition: League | Attendance: 637
Man Of Match: Ryan Hope
Starting Line Up
- Billy Granger
- Sean Fraser
- Jhai Dhillon
- Guy Hollis
- Tom Williams
- Adam New
- Lewis Putman
- Ryan Hope
- Charlie Mpi
- Jake Parsons
- Warren Harris
Slough Town were unable to get back to winning ways and halt Kettering's push for the playoffs as the Rebels slipped to a single-goal defeat at Latimer Park.
Kettering came into the game unbeaten in six games, and made it seven as Wilson Carvalho's magnificent second half strike sealed the points against a shot-shy Slough side, in an otherwise fairly dull match.
A strong wind and tricky playing surface combined to ensure this game would not be a classic. Both sides took time to adapt to the conditions early on. Lewis Putman turned and shot wide of the post on 11 minutes, and Spencer Weir-Daley shot over from close range six minutes later after Dom Langdon's long throw was not dealt with.
Neither side looked particularly dangerous and it wasn’t until 32 minutes that either side gave their opposition defenders something to repel. Slough's Tom Williams played in a free kick from the right flank, but neither Warren Harris nor the returning Charlie Mpi could get a touch at the back post.
Slough's main source of attacking threat came from Guy Hollis' long throws, and whilst Mpi and Adam New were able to flick them on, Kettering, marshalled by Gary Mulligan, cleared the danger.
The last action of the first half saw Putman fire a free kick wide from 20 yards, and he was then forced off with a back injury at the interval, replaced by Scott Harris.
Kettering immediately looked to get their noses in front as the second half started. Liam Bateman got in a dangerous cross which stand-in keeper Billy Granger dealt with, but the hosts built up the pressure and forced three successive corners. One was headed away by Guy Hollis as Weir-Daley waited to pounce, and then Ben Stephens' corner was headed on by David Popa and Weir-Daley again put the ball over the bar.
It seemed as if a mistake or moment of magic would lead to a goal, and Carvalho conjured up a goal on 61 minutes. The Poppies winger brought the ball inside from the left, stepped inside Jake Parsons and unleashed an unstoppable right foot shot high past Granger.
From then on, it seemed likely the hosts would go on and win the game, and the Poppies had further chances. Carvalho had a penalty appeal waved away, and Weir-Daley turned well but fired over.
Slough's chance to equalise looked to have come on 72 minutes, but Warren Harris failed to control the ball at the vital moment after Mpi had turned and found him in space.
Substitute Liam Canavan tested Granger with a dipping shot, and the Slough keeper looked less than comfortable on a few occasions with the wind having an effect on Kettering's crosses played into the box.
With time running out, Slough managed to advance further towards the Kettering goal, but found themselves shut out. Mpi appealed in vain for a penalty as he went down under a challenge from Langdon, but the Poppies defender had won the ball cleanly.
In a final push, Canavan was in the right place to make a saving clearance, as Warren Harris linked up with his brother Scott to put a cross into the box, but the Poppies held on to a win which takes them to within a point of the playoff spots, whilst Slough slip down to 16th position ahead of the visit of Hungerford Town on Monday afternoon.
Kettering Town: Craig Hill, Liam Bateman (Perry Cotton 88), Dominic Langdon, Gary Mulligan (c), Chris Carruthers, Herve Pepe-N’Goma, Wilson Carvalho, Ben Stephens (Liam Canavan 72), David Popa, Spencer Weir-Daley (Silvano Obeng 78), James Brighton. Subs not used: Ben Baker, Will Grocott.