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Slough Town 2 Ebbsfleet United 0 match report: FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round replay defeat for National League side as Jordon Ibe makes debut

Sorry Ebbsfleet were dumped out of the FA Cup by National League South Slough on Tuesday night.

The Fleet hardly had a shot on target in the 90 minutes during the Fourth Qualifying Round replay.

Ebbsfleet's Darren McQueen in action at Slough on Tuesday night. Picture: Ed Miller/EUFC
Ebbsfleet's Darren McQueen in action at Slough on Tuesday night. Picture: Ed Miller/EUFC

Ebbsfleet were comprehensively beaten by a Slough team who will now host League 2 Grimsby Town in the First Round.

Ebbsfleet made five changes after the 2-2 draw between the teams at the weekend. There was a first start in Fleet colours for former Liverpool man Jordon Ibe while Josh Wright, Omari Sterling-James, Ben Chapman and David Amoo all came into the team.

Slough made two changes from Saturday’s game at Stonebridge Road with Nathan Minhas and David Ogbonna replacing Johnny Goddard and Leon Chambers-Parillon in their line-up.

That signalled a more attacking formation from the hosts than, understandably, they set up with in the first game.

It turned into a first-half horror show for Ebbsfleet. Slough wanted every ball more, ran that bit faster and looked more cohesive in every sense. The Fleet often left themselves three on three at the back, and were given the runaround by a lively home side.

Slough, who took just 62 seconds to go ahead in Saturday’s tie, had three good chances in the first seven minutes. Munasha Sundire’s third-minute shot was fumbled by keeper Mark Cousins who was able to gather the loose ball in. Then David Ogbonna’s cross was miskicked in front of goal by Nathan Minhas, who could have had a hat-trick himself in the first half. Within a minute, George Alexander kept the ball alive in the box and Minhas poked it inches wide of the upright.

Ebbsfleet’s first real attack came on 13 minutes when Franklin Domi surged forward after beating three players but his shot was deflected behind for a corner.

Having struggled to defend against corners on Saturday, Slough keeper Rohan Luthra punched the first ball in clear but the Fleet were unable to keep the ball in play from their second corner and it summed up a dreadful opening 45 minutes.

Domi then had the Fleet’s best chance on 28 minutes but his free-kick from a wide angle was cleared off the line by Tyrese Dyce.

Slough deservedly went ahead on 32 minutes when they brilliantly carved open the Fleet defence down the right and skipper Josh Jackman advanced into the penalty area and found the far corner.

They doubled their lead three minutes before the break, after winning a loose ball in midfield, Matt Lench drove forward as the Fleet defenders backed off and fired in a stunning low drive into the bottom corner from 25 yards.

It could have been worse as Haydn Hollis gave the ball away cheaply just a minute later but Minhas was unable to take advantage with the Fleet defence in disarray.

Then, on the stroke of half-time, Minhas headed over at the far post from a corner.

Ibe had struggled to make an impression, although he was not alone in that regard, and was replaced at the break by Craig Tanner while boss Dennis Kutrieb also introduced leading scorer Dominic Poleon.

Slough’s Scott Davies and Temi Eweka - for booting the ball over the stand when his team were awarded a free-kick - joined Wright in the referee’s notepad early in the second half.

Alexander’s shot was blocked in the box and Hollis hacked clear Ogbonna’s follow-up which may well have ended up going wide.

Eight of the starting line-up won the National League South title last season with the Fleet but they looked a pale shadow of that squad, despite the introductions off the bench, which included Shaq Coulthirst with 17 minutes remaining in what was effectively the last throw of the dice.

If the Fleet deserved all the plaudits that came their way last season, they could have no complaints about those talking about their shortcomings over the two ties with their National League South opponents.

But it was Slough that so nearly extended their lead as centre-back Dan Bayliss saw his left-foot shot come back off the inside of the post with Cousins beaten.

With four minutes left McQueen cut in from the right but fired his shot horribly wide but the visitors never really looked like making a game of it.

Slough: Luthra, Jackman, Bayliss, Lench (Chambers-Parillon 90+5mins), Minhas (Goddard 86mins), Davies (Prosper 90+1mins), Eweka, Dyce, Sundire, Ogbonna, Alexander. Subs not used: McElroy, Platt, Spicer, North.

Ebbsfleet: Cousins, O’Neill, Hollis, White, Sterling-James (Poleon 46mins), Wright, Domi, Chapman, Ibe (Tanner 46mins), McQueen, Amoo (Coulthirst 73mins). Subs not used: Cisse, Edser, Fanimo, Odokonyero.

Referee: Steve Parkinson.

Attendance: 779.

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