Town in need of a midfield general

Slough Town

Slough Town

Lee (43)


League Paul Lee
Slough Town, with only a make-shift side, completely outplayed Barking in their Isthmian League match on Saturday and should have won by a far bigger margin but it is obvious that they need a central mid-field player to direct operations.

Manager Joe Arpino said: "If we had had better breaks and the ground had not been in a bad state I feel we could have slaughtered them."

The leisurely control which Slough exerted over Barking for 80 per cent of the game without converting their dominance into goals did not, however, go down well with the crowd. Many fans seemed more intent on listening to the radio bulletins on the F.A. Cup semi-finals than watching the game in the second half.

One of the few delights of the afternoon was the performance of Paul Lee in attack. He received sufficient support from Feely, Cooke and Friend to pose frequent problems for the Barking defence with his dribbling skills.

And at the back make-shift centre-half Roger Mackay, who was deputising for the injured Tim Turl, looked impressive despite his lack of height. In fact, the Barking No. 9, Peter Burton, recently watched by scouts from Tottenham, hardly got a look-in.

Slough nearly scored as early as the third minute when Friend's corner was tipped over by keeper Markwick.

Town continued to exert a lot of pressure throughout the first half without really producing very entertaining football but it still seemed only a matter of time before they would score.

Dave Russell had a good chance in the 17th minute, with the goalkeeper off his line, but he chipped over.

As the game wore on play became more and more scrappy and a misunderstanding between Underwood and Mackay almost let in Burton but his shot was well blocked by Porter.

Slough at last woke up and in the 43rd minute they got a long overdue goal. Russell started a fine move on the left by weaving his way past two defenders before crossing to Lee who slotted the ball home.

The substitution of Waites for Dingwall in the second-half seemed to give the Barking attack more bite and they went close several times. In the 60th minute a brilliant through ball from Ballard was well taken by Ironton but Porter pulled off a timely save to keep Slough in front.

During the second-half Lee and Feely were consistently getting caught by the Barking offside trap although one or two of the linesman's decisions seemed puzzling.

Slough nearly threw the game away right at the end when after a mix-up in defence both Burton and Key had chances to score but their shots were blocked. If Barking had scored it would have been an injustice to a Slough team which played quite well considering it had been put together at the last moment.

Joe Arpino said he intended to try out other players before the end of the season. He commented: "Now we have escaped relegation we want to build up our squad for next season so we will probably be giving some of the reserve players a run. Barry Metcalfe should be fit to play soon, and I also want to give Neil Pettifer and Rowan Dodds a game."

Barking Lineup


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