These articles are published in the Slough Town FC programme. The Rebels play in the National League South in a swanky new ground. I’ve been supporting Slough since the beginning of time despite now living in Brighton.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


Printed in the FA Cup 1st round replay v Mansfield Town Tuesday 13th November 2012.
We lost 4-1 on penalties in front of 1,597. Gutted.

This FA Cup run has been like a shot in the arm. About confirming why we love football. When you stand in the wind and rain for a bore draw in front of 100 people and ask yourself, why do I bother? The games away to Gosport, Margate and Mansfield remind you why. But more importantly why you love supporting Slough Town.
The disappointment of our third play off defeat in a row and the decade long ground-sharing seemed to knock the stuffing out of our fans this season but this cup run has put a spring in everyone’s step.
I must admit I didn’t expect us to get anything out of the Margate or Gosport games, but the team seems to be getting up a head of steam so much so that I thought we could get a result out of Mansfield.
At the Gosport away game (we won’t talk about the home one!) I spoke to a young lad from the Isle of Wight who had made two trips on a ferry to get to his first Slough Town game. Another lad from Edinburgh got to his first game away to Mansfield and is promising to be here tonight.
These are the games that fire the imagination, that get people along to experience a team for the first time and maybe start supporting the club in the long run.
And what a great day out it was in Mansfield. Slough fans descended from all corners of the British Isles, twitter went into Rebel meltdown and the club for so long in the doldrums felt like it was re-announcing itself to the world. We’re back! Not that we’ve ever gone away, just been limping and spluttering on in our sick bed. 255 fans behind the goal singing their hearts out, while our players threw themselves at every ball. Relief and a bit of disbelief at the final whistle. We’d only gone and held a team of professionals three leagues above us to a draw.
And didn’t it feel good when they announced in the second round that we were smallest club left in the competition. Then if both clubs when their replays we will be playing Walsall away. Ha! They owe us one after our famous first round win against them seven years ago when Paul Merson was player manager at the time and said "Losing to Slough was the worst day of my football life. The sound of Slough players celebrating still haunts me." We held a red card protest against the council before the Walsall game to encourage them to help us find a ground. Fast forward seven years and the council are behind us, the ground is frustratingly, tantalizingly close.
Mansfield won’t like coming here. Their ground is like Wembley compared to what we’ve got to offer. So let’s turn up the volume and become that clichéd 12th man.
This cup run – now our seventh game – is one for the fans, for the people who volunteer behind the scenes, for the players, the management, our chairman and for the one person who we wish was still here to enjoy. Chris Sliski.


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