Rebels Do Just Enough



Hales (46)
Slough Town

Slough Town

Pluckrose (53), Scott (54)
FA Trophy Attendance: 482 Unknown
Slough's return trip to Margate failed to show any difference between the standards of Conference football and that of the Beazer Homes League southern division. The question was why, when suddenly needed, Slough turned in exactly what was required and no more?

With 46 minutes gone, and the second half just begun, the Rebels were caught with a poor goal to find themselves behind. But they replied with a period of intense pressure and hit two goals within a minute in the 53rd and 54th — to gain the advantage, and that was it!

They were fortunate not to go behind after seconds when a poor back pass forced keeper Trevor Bunting into a fine save. Slough replied with a Steve Thompson effort that saw him turn and fire across the face of goal but it was Margate who get the honours from this game. Margate, placed 14th in their respective competition, two leagues below Slough, hadn't threatened much at Wexham Park. But in the replay on Tuesday night they showed much more ability in attack and constantly caused problems for the Rebels' defence.

Slough were too often caught offside when they tried to push forward and offered so little in attack during the first half that it was questionable whether they were going to get anything from this tie. Injuries still caused problems. Paul McKinnon was sorely missed up front and Gary Donnellan's absence was obvious as was the missing Phil Stacey.

Margate offered a tight defence and shut down every avenue that Slough set out to explore. But a combination of wayward passing and a total lack of ability to control the midfield saw the home side causing most of the early problems. Margate's Mark Brewer was the best midfield man on show during the evening and dominated the centre of the park.

Margate began to get the width as their offside trap and the Rebels' failings was the game played mostly in their half in the first period. Brewer and Martin Buglione showed pace and ability to get behind the full backs and whip in some dangerous looking crosses and Trevor Bunting was the busier keeper during the first half.

When Slough tried to push forward they found Alan Pluckrose on the left their best option and he twice raced into the box, once to see his shot cleared and then to see his cross hacked away, but apart from that the Rebels didn't even force a corner. Slough desperately needed some width but found their passing lacking or things just too tight and their impressive passing game fell to pieces as Margate harried and bustled and won most of the 50/50 balls.

A frustrating first half came to a quiet finish with Slough needing to prove their Conference quality. But things got worse for the Rebels when just after the restart Margate scored. Buglione was unmarked at the far post and his effort was blocked only for Roy Hales to hit the net with the rebound.

Having produced so little in the first half the big question was going to be if Slough could claw their way back into the game. The answer was that it was all too easy. With 53 minutes gone a corner was half cleared and fell to Francis Joseph on the right, who whipped in a cross that the unmarked Pluckrose headed home.

A minute later and Steve Scott thumped in a tremendous shot which beat Kevin Hudson all ends up and Slough were rolling, having finally found their form. With Thompson moving wide on the left, he found more space and Slough caused problems from that position. Thompson himself was just wide with a shot but after their rally it all quietened down again.

It was back to normal as the half wore on and Margate began to get back on top. The Rebels began to find more space but having showed what they are capable of when the situation demands, they sat back on the lead and could only grind out the rest of a dour half. Neal Stanley did well to set up Thompson but the latter sent the ball flying wide of an open goal.

Margate had further periods of pressure and found space against the Slough defence but never caused too much of a problem and it is Slough that go into the next round at Enfield.

Margate Lineup


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