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Flackwell Heath (A)
Sat Sep 21
15:00

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Flackwell Heath (A)
Sat Sep 21 15:00
The Vanarama National League South
8th
18pts

Rebels Into The Semi-Finals

| B&B Senior Cup
Att: 280
Maidenhead United
Hale (67)
1 - 2
Slough Town
Boot (27), Riddell (86)
Danny Steer
Slough Town progressed to the semi-finals of the Berks and Bucks Senior Cup with an impressive and long awaited victory over local rivals Maidenhead United. The Rebels dominated the thrilling encounter and despite the Ryman Premier opposition equalising mid way through the second half they couldn’t find a winner and were eventually punished when Lee Riddell killed off the Magpies with only minutes to go.

The two sides came into the match with something to prove to their respective set of fans. Both teams had experienced costly league defeats at the weekend and were desperate to regain some credibility.

Slough were quick out the blocks and made sure the Magpies knew they were definitely taking this match seriously. Lee Riddell delivered a first rate cross which met the feet of Ian Hodge, unfortunately Wilson stood tall and made a great save in the Maidenhead goal.

Maidenhead were once again playing an old school physical game and with only five minutes gone Yaku committed a harsh foul on Lee Riddell. Riddell whipped in the free kick, Hodge controlled the ball with his head and scouted out Glen Harris who had escaped his marker, however Harris’s effort didn’t do enough to trouble Wilson in goal.

Maidenhead were given their first real chance of the match when captain Steve Daly fouled Durrant on the edge of the penalty area. Alan Foster organized the defence well and the wall blocked the incoming shot.

Slough’s desire to score was evident but that vital goal was still eluding the Rebels. Danny Steer played an inch perfect pass to Ian Hodge who found himself in enough space to muster a shot, however the weak effort was once again dealt with by the Wilson but this time he couldn’t hold on to the ball and Boot wasted a great goal scoring opportunity by blasting the ball over the bar.

The chances kept on coming for the Rebels but the combination of poor shooting and good goalkeeping was continuing to deny a deserving Slough. Once again Hodge escaped his man and had a great chance to open the deadlock but as before Wilson came out to meet Slough’s leading goal scorer and stopped him in his tracks.

With Matt Miller unavailable, Eddie Denton was forced to pair Boot and Hodge up front, thus forcing Denton to play a 4-4-2 formation, so far the striking partnership was working well and to improve relations a goal was to make things even better. However the creativity for the opening goal was going to come from another source. Danny Steer, dropped for the defeat at Worthing, was once again giving 100% and was still proving there is more to come from him.

Steer made a wonder run down the left wing, beating three or four Maidenhead players, he was rewarded with a shot on goal, his powerful effort was once again well saved by Wilson, however the rebound was headed in by Boot, leaving two desperate Maidenhead defenders tangled on the goal line.

Slough should have been more than just one goal up at half time, missed chances could still cost the Rebels if Maidenhead decided to up their game in the second half. Even though Slough couldn’t net a second before half time they had successfully denied the Magpies, and there had been some inspirational play from Riddell, Harris and Steer.

Slough started the second half the same as they finished the first, the stronger of the two teams. Almost immediately Danny Steer had a chance to extend Slough’s one goal lead. Ian Hodge, who was working tirelessly as usual, crossed for Danny Steer on the left flank, Steer beat a flustered defender but his shot was parried away by an impressive Wilson.

However after this Slough stepped off the gas slightly and Maidenhead upped their game. Former Rebel Steve Hale was looking increasingly dangerous around the box but the impressive Slough defence were keeping him at bay.

Maidenhead were on the brink of an equalizer and 25 minutes into the half they got what they needed. Yaku side footed Riddell and crossed to unmarked Hale who was waiting on the goal line, a simple tap in was all that was needed to secure the much needed equalizer.

Maidenhead had their tails up and soon after the equalizer they were looking for another. Yaku struck a perfect side footed shoot across the face of the goal only for Alan Foster to pull out a superb one handed save to deny the Magpies.

Neither team wanted to go through a gruelling period of extra time and it would be the team that most wanted the win that would get it. Slough upped their game one more gear but efforts from Harris, Daly and Steer were off target.

Slough’s persistence paid off with literally minutes to go. Michael Murphy ran hard to gain possession from a wilting Maidenhead defender, a final surge of energy ran through the Slough team, Murphy side stepped the defender so he could cross into the area, the ball missed everyone but Lee Riddell was waiting on the far post and scored his first goal for Slough.

There was no need for extra time as the referee blew his whistle and Slough proceeded to the Semi-Finals to meet either Marlow or Bracknell at home. A rejuvenated Slough deserved the win and hard work guaranteed their place in the next round. If Slough can play the same creative football, show the same sort of passion, determination and drive in the league match against an improving Tooting & Mitcham side on Saturday, a much needed 3 points could be in the bag.

Maidenhead United Line up

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