Rebels lose out by odd goal in five

Slough Town

Slough Town

Rainford (pen 67, 90)
Billericay Town

Billericay Town

Gentle (30), Woolsey (35), Linger (83)
League Attendance: 363 David Rainford
Slough hoped to build on their recent good performance at the New Lodge where they were able to pick up a point against Billericay in March.

With Townley returning to the side at right back, and debutant Elias Bakishan at right wing both starting brightly and combining well, things looked up for the Rebels.

The first opening of the game fell to the Rebels after good play by Bakishan and Townley saw the big defender cross the ball into the path of Marshall. As the attacker went to strike the ball, a great saving tackle blocked the shot as spun the ball wide. In the process, Marshall went down, and was not able to continue in the game, after a bright opening spell from Slough's top scorer.

Billericay's full back Gentle had a good run shortly after taking him into the Slough area, but his shot was saved neatly by young Rebels keeper Matt Hockley.

Billericay were passing the ball around neatly and showing some great movement off the ball and with livewire Joe Baker upfront causing chaos with his pace, Slough were never going to be able to rest easy. It was Baker's dangerous ball in which caused McPherson to clear the ball well in a good period of pressure from Billericay.

Dickinson had to be at full stretch moments later as a good ball in from Wilkinson to the back post was taken off the head of the lurking Markman by Steve Dickinson to give the Rebels a corner. From the resulting corner the ball was half cleared to Coombes on the edge of the area, but his turn and shot found King well positioned to save the shot comfortably.

Shortly after a Steve Daly backpass saw the Rebels keeper Hockley take too long on the ball giving Piscopides the chance to close him down and block his clearance. Fortunately for the Rebels, Barrowcliff was on hand to clear the ball from the on rushing Tomlinson to safety.

From the resulting quickly taken throw in Tomlinson cut along the by line and crossed the ball low into the path of Dominic Gentle who slammed the ball high and hard into the net from close range with Hockley given no chance.

Billericay extended their lead six minutes later when a low left wing cross from Justin Gentle was cut out well by the impressive Steve Daly. The resulting corner was half cleared to Penn who delivered a great curling ball to the back post where Woolsey was unmarked, heading back across the goal, again leaving Hockley with little chance.

Slough began to fight back and Markman did well to break past two Billericay defenders, but could only hit his shot straight at King in the Billericay goal. Markman again caused problems with his pace when a high ball over the top caught the 'Ricay defence napping. As the ball sat up nicely on the edge of the box, his attempted lob over King also went over the bar, but the referee spotted and infringement and gave the Rebels a free kick on the edge, which Markman took, but blazed well over.

In the last chance of the first half, a right wing cross fell to Tomlinson, but his shot on the volley wnet straight at Hockley in the Rebels goal.

Slough played through the second half in a much more positive fashion and quickly began to apply pressure to the Billericay defence. Damian Markman had a superb opportunity for the Rebels after 53 minutes when a long back post cross was headed back into the six yard area, and with the goal almost gaping, the young striker put his ball well over the bar.

Minutes later, Markman broke between two defenders and put in a cross which caused King to be alert as he pushed the ball onto the bar before going out for a corner. Billericay were able to counter from the corner and a long clearance found the run of Piscopides whose attempted lob had no lift in it and went straight to the grateful Hockley.

Baker's pace again gave the Rebels defence problems as his quick counter and cross found Piscopides unmarked at the back post, but the striker could not direct his header on target and it went harmlessly wide.

After 67 minutes had passed Steve Stott broke past a defender down the left wing. As he was brought down the referee awarded the free kick right on the line, but the linesman raised his flag, and the referee changed his decision giving the Rebels a penalty.

Up stepped David Rainford, who kept his cool well after waiting for some time to be able to take the penalty, slotting the ball low centrally with King diving to his left.

This goal clearly lifted Slough as they began to pour forward with more of a purpose and winning the clearances between the edge of the area and the half way line. A Rainford corner to the edge of the area was met well by Steve Daly, but King pulled off a very good save to deny the Rebels captain, parrying the ball wide.

Shortly after, a ball over the top was chased by Coombes who forced Dickinson into a mistake, but again, King was equal to Coombes's shot as he saved low down with his feet.

Billericay were able to counter through Baker's pace, but they were not able to create any real openings as the Rebels began to assert themselves more and more on the game. Baker did have one opportunity, but snatched at his effort from a narrow angle hitting his shot comfortably wide.

The killer blow for the Rebels came in the 83rd minute when a 35 yard looping volley from Billericay substitute Linger was misjudged by Rebels keeper Hockley as it dipped in under the bar to restore Billericay's two goal lead. This goal deflated Slough as Billericay began to get their neat passing game back together.

Slough still fought hard in every department, epitomised by the attitude of Darron Wilkinson and Steve Stott in the centre of the Slough midfield fighting hard to regain the ball.

Another long ball over the top, and again the presence of the impressive Coombes caused an error which allowed Rainford to take a touch into space before hammering a low shot home from 20 yards out to bring the Rebels back to within a goal again. But despite all their late pressure, the resolute Billericay defence did not crumble, and held on to take all three points.

Billericay Town Lineup

King, Dickinson, J Gentle, Penn, Moore, Baker, D Gentle, Morris, Piscopides, Tomlinson, Woolsey. Subs: Genty, Linger (for Morris, 70), Williams (for Piscopides, 70)


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