Rebels get their spirit back

St Albans City

St Albans City

Howarth (1), Trebble (6), Clark (52 pen)
Slough Town

Slough Town

McVie (56), Hammatt (78), Bicknell (90+3)
League Attendance: 646 Unknown
Slough Town retrieved some respect and their fighting spirit as they battled back from an early shock to come away from St Albans with a point on Monday night. Having lost a goal in the first minute and from a position of 3-0 down with 38 minutes to go, the Rebels refused to give up and kept playing football to get on the goal trail with the equaliser coming in injury time.

The Rebels were marshaled superbly by Paul Hardyman, whose shooting from deep was showing them the way. Another bonus was the display from new signing Brian Hammatt who scored a brilliant individual goal on his debut for the club.

Slough were caught in the opening minute with a goal after just 35 seconds. A corner from Lenny Piper found Rob Howarth who headed home at the poorly guarded near post.

The Rebels continued under siege during the next three minutess with headers flying over the bar in several close shaves. In the sixth minute, Slough were behind again when a Matt Jones corner came to Mark Keen at the back post who stabbed goalwards and it was touched in by Neil Trebble.

On 25 minutes, Paul Wilkerson needed two attempts to hang on to a good strike by Trebble, but luckily he did. Slough had a couple of efforts before half-time. Hardyman hit a good shot from 25 yards which went over the top, and a neat half-volley by Matt Bicknell was just caught under the bar by keeper Paul Newell.

Slough looked determined at the start of the second half, and four minutes after the restart, a couple of fumbles by Newell were nearly punished by McVie. Then on 52 minutes Michael Thorp was unlucky as he blocked a cross from Matt Jones then went to win the lose ball and clattered into Jones and a penalty was given. It technically was a penalty but Thorp was harshly treated with a booking. Steve Clark put the penalty away for his ninth league goal of the season.

The Slough fightback started in earnest on 56th minute. A free kick was played short to Hardyman and from about 25 yards out his drive smashed against a crossbar and McVie followed up to open the Rebels' account.

Three minutes later, Wilkerson made an excellent stop from Howarth to keep Slough in touch and the Rebels were finding more space and passing a lot better. Then on 71 minutes another free kick was touched to Hardyman who again hit a lovely drive which just screamed over the bar.

Then a piece of magic from Hammatt on 78 minutes. He picked a ball up a good 40 yards out and went on a mazy run avoiding three challenges then hit a left-foot shot which curled away from Newell and into the net.

With a couple of minutes go, Slough almost made it three but the effort was cleared. In the third minute of injury time, a Slough corner, from the left was headed away towards the edge of the area where Matt Bicknell got hold of it and hit a shot well which seemed to take a deflection, to get the well earned draw.

Hardyman said: "The lads got at them and piled on the pressure in the second half, and we could have easily snatched a winner."

St Albans City Lineup


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