Slough Town v City Preview

City are back in action on Tuesday evening when they head up the M4 to face Slough Town in a league fixture. This is the first of only three evening matches scheduled for this season; following a visit to Hampton & Richmond early in the new year we will host The Rebels for the return fixture in March.

Two seasons ago Slough joined City in the playoffs but have struggled since and, after a poor last campaign, currently sit in 18th place with just eight points from their nine matches. Following victory over Chelmsford on the opening day they have suffered five defeats, three of which have been at their Arbour Park home against Chippenham, St Albans and Ebbsfleet. However they achieved the shock result of the day on Saturday when they triumphed 2-1 at Havant & Waterlooville.

Their poor home form cost them dearly in the FA Cup with Whitehawk, who now play two levels below National League South, achieving a shock win in the 2nd Qualifying Round.

The two clubs met twice in 18 days last Autumn with both games taking place in Buckinghamshire. A Freddie Hinds goal was enough to secure victory for City in the 3rd Qualifying Round of the Cup but a few days after our subsequent exit to Havant & Waterlooville the Rebels got their revenge in the League.

A poor game finally came to life with three goals in the last six minutes. Donovan Wilson’s equaliser was not enough as Max Worsfold secured the points with a stunning free kick. Incredibly this was the second time in two seasons that this fixture had been won by a last minute goal from Slough.

Perhaps City’s finest goal in this fixture was scored by Tom Richards back in 2019.

However, it would certainly be fair to say that this is not one of City’s favourite hunting grounds in the League as in our nine visits to either Wexham Park or Arbour Park since the first in 1990 we have yet to win, having picked up five draws.

There should be two familiar faces in our opponents’ line up on Tuesday. Freddie Grant joined Slough in the summer after making six starts in the stripes last year and in goal should be Jon North who faced us many times for Wealdstone, including the play off eliminator in 2019 when of course he unfortunately ended up in hospital.

The opening of Arbour Park in December 2016, was a major milestone for the Club, finally returning to their Slough hometown after an absence of 13 years. They had vacated their former Wexham Park ground in 2003 and had been forced to ground share elsewhere until the new ground was built.

It is certainly a well appointed ground with a particularly eye catching main stand providing an excellent view of the pitch. There is a smaller seating area on the opposite side while the small terraces behind both goals are covered. There is a large, comfortable bar in the main stand and it is possible to watch the match from the adjoining elevated veranda.

The nearest pub is the Lemon Tree on Shaggy Calf Lane with many more in the town centre.

All you need to know about visiting Arbour Park can be found here.

The 95 mile trip from Bath will take around two hours but unfortunately there was not sufficient interest for the Supporters Club to run a coach to this fixture.

The train trip from Bath Spa will take around 1.5 hours, changing at Reading, with a fifteen minute walk from Slough station. However, with engineering works in place overnight, the return trip will involve a replacement bus service from Swindon to Bath.

Hopefully as many supporters as possible will manage to get to Arbour Park but remember if you cannot that there will be full commentary provided by the excellent Bath City Internet Radio station.