FA Trophy progress continues for Rebels

Chelmsford City

Chelmsford City

Slough Town

Slough Town

Matt Murphy (88)
FA Trophy Attendance: 424 James Saulsbury
Slough continued their fantastic cup form this season with a late Matt Murphy goal meaning that the Rebels’ record in the knockout competitions stands at seven wins out of seven.

The team have scored twenty two goals in those games, conceding only four and Slough will be hoping to extend the great run against Yeading next week.

The line up showed just the one change from the previous Saturday with Christian Metcalfe back, replacing Ryan Spencer who picked up a knock in the Worthing game.

Slough started much the brighter and almost took the lead inside three minutes. Alex Haddow broke down the left and whipped in a dangerous cross which Glen Harris headed goalwards. The ball struck defender Adam Holmes on the knee and deflected in the opposite direction. With goalkeeper Paul Nicholls stranded, Holmes was lucky to see the ball trickle past the post for a corner.

Josias Carbon then became Slough’s main attacking weapon as his lovely cross was headed wide by Matt Murphy. Then a harmless looking cross from Carbon floated over Nicholls’ head and almost dropped inside the far post.

Shortly after, the same player struck a long range shot which was deflected wide for a corner.

Like in the league game earlier this season, Chelmsford began to find their feet with Steve Butterworth looking the most likely to create something. Firstly he found some space away from Michael Murphy but his attempted lob sailed well over the bar. Then he broke down the right and crossed for David Hawes to volley at goal from close range. It looked a certain goal until a miraculous save from Shaun Allaway pushed the ball round the post for a corner. Butterworth had a further chance but his long range drive skimmed the crossbar and went over.

The game was becoming stretched and Slough had a further chance as Ian Hodges lobbed pass put Matt Seedel away but he shot well over the bar.

Chelmsford came back and two dangerous crosses by Liam Hopkins almost undid Slough minutes before the break. The first was inches too high for Hawes and the second was headed wide by Butterworth when he should have done better.

After the break, Slough began to exert more and more pressure with Seedel starting to hassle the Chelmsford backline. He took on three players before his low shot was comfortably saved by Nicholls. The home side were restricted to chances on the break and Gary Ansell was unlucky to see his shot deflected wide by a great block by Michael Murphy.

Nicholls was called into action again as Harris cut in from the left and hit a powerful effort goalwards but the keeper made a smart save. He then had to gather a low shot from Hodges after he spilled the original effort.

As Slough piled on the pressure, even the defenders started to shoot as Michael Murphy dragged one long range effort harmlessly wide.

With five minutes remaining it looked like all Slough’s good work would be undone as Michael Murphy’s error on the half way line let Butterworth run at goal. However, the lively striker fired across Allaway but just wide of the far upright.

Then just as both teams seemed to be preparing for a replay, Harris found space on the edge of the box. His powerful strike was fumbled onto the bar by Nicholls and as it dropped Matt Murphy got to the ball first. As Nicholls rushed out to him, the midfielder-cum-striker tapped the ball past him and despite the efforts by Cameron Stewart the ball trickled over the line for the winner.

In the final seconds Slough were unlucky not to double their advantage as Danny Steer, a half time substitute for the injured Haddow, cut in from the left and fired an effort which seemed destined for the goal but eventually skimmed the outside of the post and went wide.

At the final whistle the relief was obvious as Slough celebrated another impressive win. A replay would have been the worst possible result for the Rebels with the massive game against Yeading coming up. The team can now look forward to the game already knowing that progress in the FA Trophy has been achieved.

Chelmsford City Lineup


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