Stan’s The Man…



Slough Town

Slough Town

Stanley (80, unknown)
Unknown Cup Attendance: 189 Neal Stanley
Slough proved they were well and truly Vauxhall League Champions when they took the Isthmian Charity Shield on Monday evening.

The Champions lined up against the AC Delco (League) Cup winners to compete in the annual curtain raiser for the Vauxhall League season — although the Rebels won't be there this year.

Aveley were full of blood and thunder and were anxious to take another Premier Division scalp, adding to their tally last year which saw them win the League Cup.

Amongst their victims were runnersup Wokingham Town over two legs, and the Essex side also earnt promotion to Division One last year. Slough's return to competitive fixtures brought with it a return to form, and as devastating as they had been last season. This time they ran the form book true to underline their progress, the Vauxhall Conference giants dispatched Vauxhall League Aveley and all they could offer — with ease.

Manager Alan Davies turned again to the flat back four and put the sweeper system back in his pocket for a while. Kevin Rowe moved to right back and Mark Mallinson to left, flanking Anderson and Knight and though it meant that last year's player of the season Trevor How had to sit out, they were superb.

Nazeem Bashir was intelligent and full of running and Steve Thompson magnificent in midfield, with the strikers working hard. After a matter of minutes though, Mark Adams was pulled off injured and replaced by Barry Rake on the left.

On a superb surface Slough suddenly clicked into gear and moved forward menacingly. Bashir, who was reading the game a pass ahead of everyone else — crossed the ball to Rake who was just over with a thundering volley.

Aveley introduced the stifling offside trap to kill off Slough and the game, and it ground into a midfield battle, Dell picking up a booking just before half time for an off the ball incident.

What happened next, as the second period started, was startling. The referee lost all control as the Aveley defence roared into the Slough men with no holds barred.

Steve Thompson was sent flying and Barry Rake almost landed in the manager's box after an appalling challenge. The Rebels had scared the life out of their opponents when they came out, moving forward well and Neal Stanley saw his shot inside the post saved by the giant frame of keeper Annetts.

Aveley retaliated with a couple of corners, Trevor Bunting doing well to hold Brett's header from the second. Darren Anderson should have put a better finish to a half cleared corner and Stanley struck the rebound into the side netting. Aveley relied more and more on their offside trap, the only real continuous movement of note that they had made, creating virtually nothing off their own backs.

A slip let in Morris and as he raced clean through Bunting pulled off a superb stop. Aveley soured the Charity final with a total lack of control, some appalling challenges that warned of broken limbs and a niggling and frustrating approach that signalled that a less accomplished side had run out of ideas.

This was when Slough went for the jugular; Rake, Bashir, Stanley and Thompson were excellent in their running and chances were created Slough finally broke the deadlock when Bashir's intelligence won them a corner. Thompson headed goalwards, Langley turned and saw his effort blocked but Stanley produced a fine far post finish after 80 minutes.

Aveley — who only lost three league games last year — cracked.

Slough hungrily swarmed all over their opponents, and Stanley notched a second. Steve Thompson launched an amazing run from deep in his own half. It was incredible as he roared through the Aveley defence like a rocket, evading Jeyes blatant attempt to trip and he crossed for Stanley to finish at the far post, Jeyes picking up a deserved booking.

At the end of the match Tommy Langley led his men up to lift the Charity shield, yet another piece of silver for the trophy cabinet.

Aveley Lineup


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