Slough Town 3 : 3 St Neots Town FC
Match
42
Slough Town 3 : 3
St Neots Town FC
Saturday 04 April, 2015 15:00

Southern League Premier Division

 

SLOUGH TOWN       3        ST NEOTS TOWN       3      

 

St Neots flattered to deceive as they squandered an early three goals advantage to return home with just a single point.  It was their fourth draw in their last six outings and this constant haemorrhaging of points is beginning to reduce their chances of a much cherished play off place at the end of the month.   With Redditch losing to Truro they remain in fifth place but it is getting very tight with seven clubs still in contention for the four playoff places.   The suspended Tom Ward was a notable loss in defence in the side as it conceded three goals away from home for only the third time this season and to add to the problems his automatic replacement Ryan Frater managed just 45 minutes before being forced off feeling ill.   However the reshaping of the attack bore immediate results with Lee Clarke moved up to lead the attack coming up with the second of St Neots three goals.   Matt Spring returned in midfield after injury and it would be wrong to be ultra critical of the result because Slough needing a point to be mathematically sure of the Premier Division berth next season were very worthy of their result as they produced a determined performance.

 

Slough started strongly with their long throws in causing the visiting defence some early problems.   Brett Longden then burst through to fire narrowly wide and Lee Clarke deftly set up Lewis Hilliard whose low shot brought a full length save from home keeper Luke Williams.   Paul Bastock then was in action at the other end making a one handed save to deny home skipper Ben Edwards – all this goalmouth action coming in the first ten minutes.   St Neots then took control with two goals in the spell of ninety seconds.   After a quarter of an hour Nathan Frater employed wide right in the attack pulled a cross back from the bye line and leading scorer Drew Roberts joyfully claimed his first goal since 21st February to give his side the lead.   In the very next attack Roberts registered an important assist as he found Lee Clarke with a short pass and his snap shot beat the keeper.   However it was not all one way because Jake Parsons was played clear of the St Neots defence and he saw a net bound shot deflected for a corner by Jack Wilkinson and then from a Parsons corner the unmarked Tom Moran skied the ball high over the bar.   Then after 25 minutes the voluble visiting supporters must have thought their side had taken a huge step towards three points when from a long throw by Matt Mitchel-King the Slough defence dithered and Lewis Hilliard picked his spot through a crowded penalty area to make it 3-0.   Adam Martin volleyed narrowly wide from a Parsons corner for the hosts and Daniel Reid hit the crossbar with a speculative lob but with ten minutes to go before the break Slough got their reward for persistence when Reid capitalised on a poorly defended long throw to fire his side back into the contest.

 

St Neots needed a solid start to the second half to defend their lead but got just the opposite.   Just three minutes after the restart from a well delivered Parsons corner kick defender Reece Yorke rose high above the St Neots defence to head down for Daniel Read to bundle home his second goal of the game from close range.   St Neots now looked ragged at the back and six minutes later a Guy Hollis free kick was blocked on the goal line and Reece Yorke scored from close range with the St Neots marking not very good.   At that point they could have fallen apart but they rallied with Roberts and Clarke bringing saves from Williams.   Two St Neots defenders were booked as they unsuccessfully tried to curb the pacey runs down the left of Chris Henry and as the tempo dropped both sides looked happy to settle for a point although both Roberts and Longden had late chances to snatch a winning goal for the visitors – the latter seeing his shot blocked by the goalkeeper’s feet.   This result still  leftSt Neots with a target of maximum points from their last four matches to guarantee a play off play – subject of course to the other results.

 

 

 

St Neots: Bastock, Longden, Wilkinson, Mitchel-King,Tann, Frater (R), Frater (N), Spring, Clarke, Roberts,Hilliard,

SubsBickerstaff (for Frater (R) 46)Vieira, Marango, Harty and Wilson.

Cards:  Longden (Y – 53), Spring (Y – 62), Wilkinson (Y - 74)

GoalsRoberts 15 mins), Clarke 16 mins), Hilliard (25mins)

 

SloughWilliams, Moran, Parsons (R), Hollis, Yorke, Martin, Parsons (J), Edwards, Harris, Read, Henry

Subs:  Smith (for Harris 76), Fraser, Short, Palmer and Betts

Card:  Yorke (Y – 64)

Goals:  Read 2 (33 & 48 mins), Yorke (54 mins)

 

Attendance354

 

RefereeShaun Barry (Northampton)

 

John Walker