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2006/07 Season Review

Archive: 2006/07 Season Review
by Nathan on 02/08/2007

A review of our 2006/07 season; a truly memorable season... for all the wrong reasons.

2006/07 Season Review
2006/07 Season Review
With only a handful of players left over from the previous campaign, a new-look Slough squad took to the field for their opening pre-season friendly against Maidenhead United. Leon Woodruffe, captain Steve Daly (pictured right), George Moleski, Leigh Mason, Gareth McCleary, Rav Briach and Ian Lovegrove remaining following the summer clearout, manager Eddie Denton was forced to turn to relegated landlords Windsor & Eton, from whom the Rebels poached a trio of players; striker Adam Wallace, goalkeeper Kieron Drake and the highly controversial defender Jamie Jarvis. They were joined by the experienced Iain Duncan, Marc Leach and Matt Glynn, to replace the highly rated Ian Hodges & Glen Harris, Michael Parkin, Andy Ballard, Josias Carbon and Mark Avery amongst others who had left.

The result was a credible 3-3 draw at York Road. More draws followed at Enfield (where Ancalet Odhiambo from Abingdon United made his debut) and Beaconsfield SYCOB before the Rebels picked up their first win at Team Bath at the beginning of August, in front of a meagre crowd of 30. It was to be the first of only a handful of victories for the Rebels over the course of the season.

A further draw came at Thatcham Town before Slough finished their pre-season preparations by being defeated 2-1 at neighbours Burnham.

Slough opened their competitive campaign in not-too-impressive fashion, losing to Leyton at Stag Meadow by the odd goal. The Rebels travelled to Harrow Borough and made up for the poor opening start by out-playing the home side and winning convincingly by 2 goals to nil. But then the rot started. Defeats to Margate, Horsham and Bromley followed before picking up their first home point of the season, courtesy of a goalless draw versus AFC Wimbledon. Slough then made it 3 defeats in Kent in quick succession by losing 3-2 at Tonbridge Angels, but progress in cup competitions was achieved. First, a 3-1 win at Arlesey Town saw the Rebels through in the Westview Cup 2nd Round where all three Slough goals were scored by substitutes. Then a 2-1 win at Combined Counties League side Cobham followed in the 1st Qualifying Round of the FA Cup.

However, further league defeats to Folkestone Invicta and Carshalton Athletic, both at Stag Meadow and both by 2-0 scorelines. Slough rounded off September by being dumped out of the FA Cup at Farnborough Town, again by 2 goals to nil.

Another trip to Kent ended in yet another defeat, this time a 2-1 scoreline at Ramsgate where new midfielder Terry Davies made his debut and Slough were unlucky to lose. Slough lost out to eventual winners Ashford Town (Mx) side in the Westview Cup by 4-0, ending Slough's recent success in the competition. In the middle of October, Slough had been knocked out of two cups, and lay adrift at the bottom of the table with a mere 4 points from their opening 10 league games. This wasn't helped by another exodus of players; with Matt Glynn and Ian Lovegrove amongst those to leave this time round. The money problems that have dogged the club for years and were getting worse and worse even drove manager Eddie Denton (pictured right), who had been at the club since 1998, to resignation.

Following a player strike over pay before the home game against Billericay Town, newly signed Errol Telemaque (who was originally going to sign for the club during the summer but joined Staines Town instead) sealed a rare win by scoring the second goal in a 2-0 victory over the high flying Essex side. It was an eventful debut for Telemaque who was sent off. This turned out to be Slough's only home win of the entire season, against a side who, ironically, went on to reach the play-off final.

The Rebels made it back-to-back league wins for the first and only time during the whole season, as goals from Mark Bartley and a spectacular overhead kick from Terry Davies won the points 2-1 at Staines and had all Slough fans thinking the tide had turned.

But then, disaster struck. A side ragged with injuries and suspensions travelled to Leighton Town who were struggling at the foot of the Southern League Division One South & West; where they humiliated 4-1. Even the return of fans favourite Matt Miller (pictured right), who gave Slough an early lead, could not lift the teams morale that was mortally damaged that day and from which they never seemed to recover from. A 6-0 defeat at Boreham Wood ended what had ultimately been a mixed October; the continuation of the bad run, the short-lived upturn in hopes and fortunes, and the almighty crash upon the return to Earth.

November was a dreadful month for the Rebels, but they were to get used to that before long. A 2-0 home defeat to Heybridge Swifts came as little surprise, but a hard-fought 2-2 draw at Worthing provided something for the Slough faithful to cheer about, if not for the 4 red cards Slough picked up that day. A 2-1 defeat at home to Aylesbury United, who were homeless and struggling at the foot of the table one step below Slough, ended Slough's interest in knockout competitions for the season at the end of the month. On top of all that, Adam Wallace, Jamie Jarvis, Marc Leach, Leigh Mason and Errol Telemaque all left the club at during November.

Bad whether meant no matches for the following three weeks, but it bought no turnaround in league form, with all three games possible in December ending in defeats against Hampton & Richmond Borough, Chelmsford City and Ashford Town (Mx) respectively.

Into the new year, and Slough started 2007 just as badly as they had ended 2006. A 5-1 defeat at Carshalton Athletic preceded defeats against Leyton (1-0) and Harrow Borough (5-0), a game which Slough went 4-0 down within the first 8 minutes of the game. Now, a mere 3 players who started the season with the club remain at the club.

Slough had little reason to be optimistic about their chances going into the game at Heybridge Swifts. Already at this stage of the season, they looked doomed to relegation, their bad form showed no sign of stopping, and Slough had lost on their previous two league visits. Also, Mark West (pictured left), a fans favourite from our Conference days had just resigned as manager, with Darron Wilkinson taking over the reigns, with former Slough Striker Steve Hale later being signed up as his assistant. At half-time Slough were 1-0 down and looked well on their way to an 8th successive defeat. However, Slough came onto the pitch for the second half a completely different team and a brace from Terry Davies and a goal from Matt Miller secured Slough's 4th and final league win of the season.

The joy at winning was short lived however, and as little as three days later, Slough travelled to Horsham, and lost 4-0.

Worthing became the only side in the league to fail to beat Slough as an own goal for practically the last touch of the game earned Slough a deserved 1-1 draw at Stag Meadow which temporarily lifted Slough off the foot of the table on goal difference. But normal service was soon resumed as defeats against East Thurrock, Hendon and East Thurrock again sent Slough straight back to the foot of the table.

March began with a goalless draw at Folkestone Invicta, but a disallowed goal could have won the game for the Rebels. However, a fixture backlog (which had nothing to do with Slough's (lack of) success) meant that there was a further 8 games during March. It mattered not though, as Slough lost each and every one of them and, having been relegated at fellow strugglers Walton & Hersham 4 days previously, were thumped 9-0 at AFC Wimbledon on the 31st.

April bought temporary relief, with a 2-2 draw at home to Margate where a last minute goal prevented Slough from gaining what would have been their 5th, and only second at home, league victory. A 1-1 draw at Ashford Town (Mx) gained Slough's final point of the campaign, before Bromley came to Stag Meadow and thumped Slough 8-0, and Chelmsford did the same a week later, winning by 4-0. Staines Town provided the last home game of the season, and despite showing signs of improvement, Slough lost 2-0 and the final chance to improved on their record of only 8 home league goals all season was lost.

A dramatic final game was in store however, as Slough were presented the chance of denying league leaders Hampton & Richmond Borough (managed by ex-Maidenhead manager Alan Devonshire with ex-Rebels Glen Harris and Ian Hodges (pictured right)) the Ryman League title. Despite the expected dominance of the table-toppers on their home pitch, Matt Miller gave Slough a shock lead which amazingly they held until right before half-time, when none other that Ian Hodges bought Hampton level. From then on their was only one winner. Ian Hodges put the home side in front right after half-time as well, as league winners in-waiting Hampton continued their dominance. But they did not build on their lead, and were (almost) made to pay the ultimate price as Matt Miller, himself a former Hampton player, popped up to net Slough's equaliser with only 5 minutes remaining on the clock. But from the restart, Hampton went up the other end and re-took the lead, which they consolidated soon afterwards to end a amazing final day of the season, where the bottom-side almost denied the top-side (with 2 ex-players) the title.

And so ended probably the worst season any Slough side has ever had to endure. Slough Town now enter the lowest level of football they have ever been at, while the club have got no closer to finding a home in Slough than they have been for the last 4 years.

Pos. Team Ply Won Drw Lost GF GA GD Pts
22 Slough Town 42 4 6 32 26 123 -97 18

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