Rebels Gain Point At Champions Elect
Date: Saturday, April 14th 2001 | Competition: League | Attendance: 688
Man Of Match: Keith McPherson
Starting Line Up
- Steve Mautone
- Steve Stott
- Chris White
- Steve Daly
- Keith McPherson
- Leon Townley
- Darron Wilkinson
- Paul Barrowcliff
- Junior Haynes
- Paul Coombs
- David Rainford
Slough belied their league position in a game which nobody expected them to get anything from. Table topping Farnboro were fully expected to chalk up their seventeenth successive victory against the lowly placed Rebels, which was displayed with the attitude shown by Boro manager Graham Westley. Wehn asked about the forthcoming Slough game he said "Are you serious? We don't need to worry about Slough Town". WRONG. Despite Boro starting brightly and forcing a lot of pressure in the Slough half, the back line of Slough held firm keeping Crawshaw and co at bay.
Neither side was able to create much after the opening spell and with Slough seeming happy to play the direct ball up to Coombes and Haynes, the majority of attacking possession was coming from Farnborough. Slough slowly began to settle and began to pose problems to the back line of Farnborough which was superbly marshalled by Annon all aftternoon.Rainford snatched at a half chance midway through the half slicing his volley wide, and Haynes also had an early attempt go comfortably wide, as the Rebels began to assert themselves more into the game.
Farnborough should have taken the lead after nineteen minutes when ex-Aylesbury front man Gary Crawshaw was out through but he showed little composure when faced with Steve Mautone in the Rebels goal, as he hit his shot comfortably over. Five minutes later Piper was released through the middle and as he tried to round Mautone the keeper was adjudged to have brought the midfielder down. Piper stepped up to complete the job from the spot, but Mautone again proved why he is so highly regarded by Slough fans by guessing correctly and parrying away what was a poor penalty by Piper. After half an hour, Coombes was put through from a great run which was well spotted by Townley. As he went to round the keeper, he stayed on his feet only to see a defender get back and block his attempt as the ball ricocheted onto Lakers hand. No penalty says the ref, much to the disgust of the Rebels fans behind the goal. Four minutes later, Coombes had the best chance from open play of the half. Haynes pressured Warner into a mistake down the left wing and crossed the ball into the centre to an unmarked Coombes where the striker could not keep his header down and the ball went harmlessly over.
The half then petered out with both sides cancelling each other out, although Slough, considering their bad start, finished the game in the ascendancy.
Farnborough came out for the second half and started in much the same vein as the first.Crawshaw had three early attempts at the Slough goal after some good play involving Piper, but on all three occasions the striker failed to trouble Steve Mautone.
Slough suffered a blow after an hour of the game had passed when they lost Darron Wilkinson through injury. Recent signing Elyas Barkhsion came on in his place as Rainford switched into the middle. Crawshaw again was the recipient of two further chances for Boro as they pressed forward for the opener. Both times, he found his match in Mautone. His first effort on the turn was straight at the keeper but his second attempt brought out the best of the Australian with a great save low down from close range. The breakthrough finally came from Crawshaw after 75 minutes when a low cross eluded Daly in the middle and foudn Crawshaw advancing in at the back post with a simple tap in.
Rather than fold, the Rebels fought back strongly with other recent signing Asumoah shining and caused the Boro defence no end of trouble when he was introduced shortly after the opening goal. Mautone again though had to be alert to prevent Crawshaw doubling the lead with another good save low down. With barely minutes remaining, came the moment Rebels fans had been waiting for for months.
Asumoah continued to run at the Farnborough defence and the ball broke to Barrowcliff on the left wing on the corner of the area. The midfielder cut inside and hit a curling shot which was well saved by McKenzie in the Boro goal. The ball fell to Elyas Barkhsion though on the byline and he cut the ball inside to Coombes who slotted the ball between McKenzies legs to bring the Rebels deservedly level. What ensued, was pure deliriousness. Players and fans all surrounding Coombes, who now has broken his duck will no doubt score plenty for this resurgent Rebels side. This equlaising goal certainly seeemed to kick Farnborough into action, and despite a late series of corners and pressure could not find a way through the Rebels defence with Daly and McPherson in particular outstanding.