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The Vanarama National League South

Now Town crash in the Trophy

| FA Trophy
Hertford Town
Brooks (4), Mahoney (19, 57)
3 - 0
Slough Town
Richard Teale
WHAT a difference a month can make in football!

In the middle of December four coachloads of disappointed but proud supporters made their homeward journey from Yeovil where their favourites had an unlucky FA Cup defeat by the Football Alliance side. On Saturday, in the F.A. Trophy, a competition in which Slough have a proud record, the Rebels fell at the first hurdle to a side occupying a trailing position in Division 1 and a club who have fewer points than Slough have in the Premier Division.

During the previous week Hertford had struggled to share the points with Wembley and been beaten 4-2 by Maidenhead United, both games at Hertford. Had Slough been poisoned, hypnotised or just been rescued from a desert island there might have been some excuse.

But this sad performance in which the players showed no interest or enthusiasm must rank as the worst for 20 seasons when Slough occupied the bottom position in the Corinthian League. With the exception of one position, in goal, Hertford were superior man for man, and yet with Halsey dropping the ball, fumbling, and missing his punches, Slough could easily have saved the day.

Feely and Lee both saw goal-bound shots kicked off the line with Halsey absent, while Charlie Marks hit the post from three yards and Lee shot over the bar four times from close in. But with Hertford in total control over both touchlines and Slough without any visible midfield to oppose them, could so easily had six or seven as the Slough defence crumbled into nothing, and Hertford were two goals up in the first 20 minutes.

In the fourth minute Slough's defence, playing at statues, allowed Steve Mahoney a free shot at goal. Teale saved at full stretch and the ball ran to Brooks outside the area who calmly shot past Teale, who was still off balance.

The second, a quarter of an hour later followed a lazy, uncaring pass by Eric Young to the feet of Mahoney.

Slough were now totally outplayed and Mahoney, outpacing Young, shot just over on the half hour. A slight recovery by Slough led to Lee shooting over from close in five minutes before the interval, and then a good centre from Russell found Lee who was off balance. Halsey missed the ball as Lee shot towards the goal but Shadbolt, who played Friend out of the game, was there to clear.

For a few minutes after the interval Slough began to gain the ascendancy and were awarded four free kicks, the execution of them being laughable for a senior side, and from the last of these, the ball was gifted to Hertford enabling Mahoney again to destroy the Slough defence with his speed, but shooting just wide.

Paul Lee shot over the bar from four yards and with that went Slough's last chance for from the goal kick Mahoney drilled his way down the middle virtually unopposed and shot over Teale's head to give Hertford a 3-0 lead with the hour not yet up.

The rest of this appalling shambles is best forgotten by Slough fans, but must be remembered by the club management. Quite clearly too many of the players are growing old together and the lack of pace in the side is crucial. A vital injection of new youthful blood with its attendant enthusiasm is needed if the club is to survive in the top division.

Report: EVENING MAIL Monday, January 14, 1980

Hertford Town Line up

Halsey, Shadbolt, Dillon, Cooper, Merryfield, East, Bevan, Darling, Brooks, Mahoney, Dawle.

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