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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

Late Copeland strike denied Rebels

| League
Att: 253
Slough Town
Davies (73)
1 - 2
Taunton Town
Collett (pen 14), Copeland (88)
Terry Davies
Taunton’s Dan Copeland scored a late winner to deny Slough Town a deserved share of the spoils at a wet Holloways Park.

The visitors started the brightest with Tom Collett lifting a shot over the bar in the second minute when through on goal. The striker will look back and think he should have done better. In reply, Terry Davies shot over from 15 yards after the ball fell to him from a Matt Miller knockdown.

Taunton went ahead with a 14th-minute penalty conceded by Slough skipper Steve Daly. The visitors broke into the penalty area and Daly slid in, only to catch the attacker after the ball had passed. Tom Collett scored the spot-kick, low to the right of on-loan goalkeeper Aaron France.

Slough started to come back into the game but were largely restricted to long-range efforts from Terry Davies in the first half. Davies fired over from a quickly taken free kick, and Matt Miller had an effort disallowed, though he was clearly offside. Debutant Glen Faircluth, partnering Matt Miller up front for Slough, was also looking sharp as he hit an effort straight at Taunton ‘keeper Jones.

At the other end, Aaron France had to be sharp to deny Taunton a second goal as he pushed wide a low cross that appeared to be sneaking in at the far post. Just before half-time, Taunton should have scored a second when Darren Stone miscued from close range, his effort eventually going out for a throw-in.

The Rebels came out with more purpose in the second half and looked to break down Taunton’s defence. The returning Clement James fired a free kick straight at Jones, while Matt Miller failed to get proper contact on a Davies cross, the ball looping up into the goalkeeper’s arms.

James tested Ian Jones again with a fierce back-post volley, which the goalkeeper was able to fist away to safety. However Jones was beaten on 73 minutes thanks to a fine Terry Davies strike. After a long ball was pumped forwards, it fell to Davies in space 25 yards out, who hit a bending, dipping effort first-time, giving Jones little time to react.

Slough pressed in search of a winner, with Davies and Miller testing Jones with more long shots, both tipped over for corner kicks. But it was to be Taunton that left with all three points. A short back pass from the unfortunate Dean Harper was seized upon by Dan Copeland who slid the ball past Aaron France, and despite the best efforts of Steve Daly chasing back, the ball trickled over the goal-line to hand the Somerset side an opening-day victory.

Taunton Town Line up

1. Ian Jones, 2. Martin White, 3. Dan Cockram, 4. Gary Fisher (c), 5. Scott Thomas, 6. Adam Faux, 7. Darren Stone, 8. Chris Slough, 9. Tom Collett, 10. James Clarke, 11. Danny Copeland. Subs not used: 12. Alex Faux, 13 Dan Pepperell, 15. Ronnie Mowatt.

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