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Sat Nov 23
15:00

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Concord Rangers (A)
Sat Nov 23 15:00
The Vanarama National League South
2nd
33pts

Away Win For Rocking Rebels

| League
Att: 140
East Thurrock United
0 - 2
Slough Town
Winston (48), Hale (72)
Sammy Winston
Slough Town made the long midweek journey across to Essex looking to build on their point gained at home on Saturday with a visit to East Thurrock United who finished 8th in last seasons Division Two.

A light rain began to fall 30 minutes before kick off and with a firm surface underneath, it made playing any sort of through ball off the floor very difficult as both sides struggled to find out. Slough started with the same starting line up that began on Saturday and created an early chance. Steve Daly managed to find some space around the back of the Thurrock defence and was found from a Gilkes free kick. Daly unselfishly put the ball back across the goal for Tony Boot who was just unable to prod the ball home at the back post, when perhaps he should have gone for goal himself.

East Thurrock proved their neat style of play and with some swift ball movement and one touch passing nearly unlocked the Rebels defence but for a saving tackle from Paul Reed to snuff out any chance of a shot. Soon after Slough broke and were awarded a free kick on the edge of the area. Hakki stepped up and bent the ball around the defensive wall but Marrable in the East Thurrock goal got a firm hand behind it and clawed it out from the top corner to give Slough a corner.

Slough continued to press for an opening goal, but East Thurrock continued to attack with pace and precise passing using their pace upfront to cause problems. Rickki Finning got on the end of a left wing cross and found himself unmarked, but could not keep his header down and Slough survived.

Slough should have taken the lead on 21 minutes when two Thurrock defenders collided and the ball fell invitingly to Tony Boot. The striker tried to place his shot across the goal and saw his effort disappointingly trickle wide of the far post from six yards out on a narrow angle.

The slippery conditions were causing both sides some trouble, but as the half closed, East Thurrock were slowly adapting the better of the two sides and forced a free kick on the edge of the area. Durrant stepped up and curled it low around the wall, but Zepherin was more than equal to it claiming the ball under pressure. Zepherin came to the rescue again soon after as a long through ball was misjudged by the otherwise impressive Steve Daly, but Zepherin was alert and was quickly off his line to snuff out the danger.

Slough made three changes at half time with Winston, Hale and Barrowcliff replacing Boot, Reed and Deaner along with reverting to 4-4-2 in formation and the substitutions immediately paid dividends. Ryan Spencer broke down the right wing and cross low into the near post where Winston dived in to meet the cross ahead of a defender and the ball could only be knocked in by the Thurrock defence. Within a minute, Slough could have extended their lead. Good Slough build up play involving Gilkes, Hakki and Hale saw Gilkes go clear in the right channel of the area. His back post cross was headed goalwards by Winston, but Hale deflected the shot inadvertantly making the save comfortable for Marrable.

Thurrock responded through Tomkins with two quick chances. Firstly he rose to meet a right wing cross and headed narrowly wide from ten yards, and shortly after created his own space and shot on the turn but straight at Zepherin in the Slough goal.

Michael Gilkes appeared to be at the heart of all the good attacking moves from Slough and was again involved on 55 minutes when his cross was punched clear by Marrable, but the ball fell invitingly to Winston whose well struck half volley was headed over on the line by a Thurrock defender for a corner.

Zepeherin was called into action again midway through the second half as another dangerous free kick came in from Dwyer, but this time the young Frenchman spilled the low effort, only to quickly recover and hold the ball. Slough responded and should have scored again on seventy minutes. Hakki was put through with a single defender to beat inside the box. He managed to cut inside into space and picked a curling shot into the far corner, but his effort was uncharacteristically off target.

Slough got the breakthrough that they were pushing for after 72 minutes. Spencer again got space to cross from the right and his high ball was headed back across by Winston to Hale who found himself unmarked and did well to volley home. Winston again came close to scoring as he got on the end of another dangerous Gilkes cross, but the ball was narrowly too high for him and he couldn't keep his effort down.

East Thurrock nearly got a breakthrough that their fast passing game deserved resulting in a shot from Finning which again, Zepherin did well to save and hold. Slough continued to press and created some further half chances in the dying moments, but the game slowed as Slough finished in control.

East Thurrock United Line up

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