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Ebbsfleet United (H)
Sat Mar 25

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Ebbsfleet United (H)
Sat Mar 25 12:30
The Vanarama National League South

Rebels Win Again

| League
Att: 384
Slough Town
Boot, Williams, B Bubb
3 - 0
Arlesey Town
Michael Gilkes
Slough eventually took the three points in what turned out to be a fiery encounter against Arlesey. Just like the reverse game earlier in the season, tempers flared, leaving the referee, on this occasion, to brandish three red cards.

Slough made one change to the team that saw off Thame in midweek with Sammy Winston coming back in to partner Tony Boot in attack. The man to give way was Ryan Spencer who was named among the subs but was obviously just making up numbers as he spent the match watching, injured, from the stand.

The game got off to a rather scrappy start as both teams failed to really take control of the game. There were half chances in the first five minutes at either end, Ryan Williams firing over for Slough after good work by Michael Gilkes before a slip by Paul Barrowcliff let in Barry Dellar who shot straight at Adrian Blake.

The returning Winston then had two good chances in the space of seven minutes to give the Rebels the lead. A long ball from defence found its way in behind the Arlesey back line and Winston, latching onto it, fired his shot against the base of the far post. He then was the beneficiary of a lovely ball from Williams but the striker couldn't direct his header on target.

Just before the half hour mark, Slough finally made some of their pressure pay off as Boot grabbed his 21st goal of the season. A free kick from the right was curled in to the area by Gilkes and Slough's top scorer flicked the header inside the far post.

The goal really got Slough going and they created two great chances to double their lead in the next four minutes, both of them falling to Boot. His first chance came about after a game of pinball on the edge of the Arlesey box resulted in the Boot being through in the clear but as the Arlesey keeper, Martyn Patching, rushed out, Boot's attempted lob hit the base of the far post, the second time Slough had been foiled by the woodwork. Then the striker was released one on one with the keeper again, but this time a heavy first touch gave Patching the chance to come and clear for a corner.

The rest of the first half was dominated by the Rebels, but they could not find any clear cut efforts on the Arlesey goal. After the break, Slough started as they finished the first half, and five minutes in Winston could have scored. Put through by Byron Bubb, his angled drive was placed just wide of the post.

On the hour, Slough were given a major advantage in the match as the referee, Mr Rolfe, brandished his first red card. After a free kick was awarded to Arlesey about 35 yards out, their big centre half's, Matthew Corbould and Steve Magona, made their way into the Slough area. After a small scuffle between Corbould and Slough's Darron Wilkinson, the Arlesey man swung an elbow into the face of the Rebel's midfielder. Having seen the incident the referee had no choice but to order the defender off and give Slough the man advantage.

Slough didn't really capitalise on the extra man straight away although there was a good chance for Steve Daly at the far post from a corner and a fantastic chance for Winston after great work by Dean Palmer down the right. As the full back got into the area is cut back was somehow put over the bar from no more than 3 yards by the luckless Winston.

With 17 minutes remaining, Slough finally doubled their goal tally, and it was worth the wait! As Williams picked the ball up about 30 yards out, the Arlesey defence were probably not too worried. However, five seconds later the ball ended up in the top corner of their net after a curling strike from the midfielder that David Beckham would have been proud of.

The match then took an unfortunate turn for the worst for Williams, as after a slightly late tackle on James Dilliutt, the midfielder received the second red card of the game for two yellow cards. As Slough's squad becomes slightly stretched it is helpful to think that the punishment should only be a one match ban as it wasn't a straight red.

The incident didn't affect Slough and , in fact, a minute later they has their third goal. A long ball forward from Ricky Browne was headed on by Winston and as the ball dropped to Boot he produced a delightful back flick which fell right into the feet of Bubb who finished calmly, capping a delightful team goal and wrapping up the match for the Rebels.

The rest of the match was played out to a back drop of superb noise from the rejuvenated Barmy Army, and assorted others behind the Arlesey goal, and both Gilkes and Palmer were giving fantastic receptions as they in turn were replaced by Christian Metcalfe and Nick Gyoury.

Two minutes before the end, the ref once again had a meaningful contribution to make. After a scuffle between Winston and Dilliutt near the dug outs, the Arlesey man appeared to lash out at the striker and once again the referee was left with little choice but to dismiss the full back.

The game concluded with what turned out to be a relatively comfortable victory for Slough who now find themselves only two points off the coveted second spot. Are we sure it's all over?

Arlesey Town Line up

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