A late goal deep into injury time was not enough for the hosts to get back into the game as Slough held on for a deserved win.
Slough were slow to come out of the traps, with Paulton having the first good chance of the game. Dave Burborough’s cross from the right was headed goalwards by Claridge, but Jackson was well placed to make the block, with Jefferies’ effort on the rebound flying over the bar.
The Rebels suffered a setback after just 12 minutes as Luke Evans was forced off with a dead-leg, to be replaced by Chris Fermie as Slough reshuffled at the back.
The alteration did not seem to deter Slough too much, and the visitors came into the game a bit more, with Danny Jordan forcing Kyle Phillips into a save with a header. Jordan managed to keep the ball in play and cross into the middle for Romeo, but some desperate defending saw his shot blocked.
The game settled down into a midfield battle, both sets of defences looking sturdy. Towards the end of the half, Slough started to play more football, and some neat interplay between Pritchard and Jordan set up Bubb for a shot from the edge of the box, but his left-footed effort was drilled three yards wide.
Paulton missed a half chance soon after, with full-back Chris Lane’s cross just too high for Claridge at the far post, who stretched and headed over the angle.
The best chances of the half belonged to Slough though, and Byron Bubb was denied by a fine save from an outstretched Phillips as he aimed for the bottom corner. The resulting corner was floated in and fell to Pritchard, whose volleyed effort was saved magnificently by Phillips again.
The outstanding chance of the half arrived just before the half-time whistle, as Bubb’s clever flick over the top set up Romeo with a clear run on goal, but he showed unusual profligacy by missing the ball completely, perhaps having too much time to think about the shot.
Slough continued to play the better football and at the start of the second half, only an excellent intervention from Jefferies prevented Jordan from having a clear run on goal after Makh’s mazy dribble.
Five minutes into the half, Romeo had another great chance as he was played in by Pritchard, but this time his low effort produced another wonderful save from Phillips, who turned the ball behind.
Slough took a well-deserved lead just two minutes later. A foul on Makh 30 yards out resulted in a free kick, which Pritchard whipped to the far post. The ball was met by Eamonn McConigley, who got a foot to the ball and forced it on target and over the goal line, despite desperate attempts to clear from the Paulton players in the crowd.
Paulton responded by making three quick-fire substitutions in an attempt to turn the tide and save the game, but Slough grew in confidence even further. Bubb went close again from 10 yards, cutting in from the left wing and bending a shot just wide of the far post.
It was no surprise when Slough scored a second goal. This time, Danny Jordan found himself through, and he calmly took the ball around Phillips before pulling back to Pritchard in the middle to side-foot home on 69 minutes.
Paulton rarely threatened as Slough had a stranglehold on the game, but created a half-chance as Lane’s cross was headed back across goal but fired off-target by Claridge.
Jagdeep Makh, becoming more of a menace on the right wing, got free and as he bore down on goal, his drilled effort across goal was deflected wide. Further chances were missed by Bubb and Jordan as Slough tried but failed to kill the game off for good.
Slough had looked good value for another clean sheet, but Paulton managed to get on the score sheet in the third minute of injury time as Dan Cleverley volleyed home after Burborough’s header had hit the post.
With only seconds remaining on referee Knight’s watch, Jamie Jackson found himself the centre of attention as he held onto the ball after the goal was scored, picking up a yellow card. In the scuffles that followed, Paulton substitute Price was dismissed for a second bookable offence but there was barely time to kick off again and Slough recorded a much-deserved victory.
Paulton Rovers Line up
1. Kyle Phillips, 2. Stuart Tovey (12. Dean Pendry), 3. Chris Lane, 4. Josh Jefferies (14. Rick Hulbert), 5. Danny Boys (15. Ollie Price), 6. Rob Cousins, 7. Ben Cleverley, 8. Jon French, 9. Robbie Claridge, 10. Dan Cleverley (c), 11. Dave Burborough. Subs not used: 16. Jason Hughes.