Slough Town end frustrating season on a high as u23s win Suburban Shield

Photo: Darren Woolley

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A frustrating season for all connected with Slough Town ended on a big high on Tuesday evening, when the club’s Academy u23s side came from behind to seal a dramatic 3-2 victory over Aldershot Town’s Academy team in the Suburban League Shield final.

Playing in front of a large crowd at Ascot United’s Racecourse Ground, including first team managers Neil Baker and Jon Underwood, the Rebels trailed 2-1 at the break but fought back in the second half, securing silverware with a goal from captain Eitel Goueth with a few minutes to play.

The first team saw their National League South season cancelled and voided due to safety and funding issues brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, but the club now has a trophy to celebrate thanks to the efforts of its u23s side.

They’d earned their place in Tuesday’s final thanks to a penalty shoot-out victory over Abbey Rangers on Saturday.

Fielding a centre back partnership of former Maidenhead United captain Mark Nisbet and one-time Reading man Scott Davies as their over-aged players, the Rebels made an ideal start with a goal inside five minutes as Dan Roth’s fizzing angled drive took a deflection and flew into the net. The Shots levelled matters through a well-worked goal and a defensive mix-up allowed them to take the lead on the stroke of half-time.

The young Rebels dominated for much of the second half, but it looked as if it wasn’t going to be their night until, with just over 10 minutes remaining, Goueth’s deflected effort from a cut back on the right-hand side deceived the Shots’ keeper and crept into the net. Goueth then stepped up to score the winner from the penalty spot with a matter of minutes to play. He and his teammates were indebted to keeper Michael Edegbe in the final seconds as he flung himself full stretch to palm a goal-bound effort around the post.

The referee sounded his final whistle shortly afterwards to spark delirious scenes of celebration.

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This week has also seen Slough Town sign former Maidenhead United defender Freddie Grant from Bath City.

The Slough management team have kept track of Grant following his standout performances against the Rebels while playing for Wealdstone a couple of seasons ago.

Grant started his career at Oxford United and, despite being only 24, has solid National League South experience following spells with Oxford City, Wealdstone, Hemel Hempstead Town and Bath City. He was also signed by Alan Devonshire to play for Maidenhead in the National League in 2019 but only made three starts.

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