Thursday 01st September 2005

Slade Green hit Whistable for six

Slade Green 6-1 Whistable Town
Go Travel Kent League Premier Division
Saturday 11 October 2003
by Tony Rouse

Slade Green’s young Sam Prett, a player Whitstable’s manager Matt Toms had tried to sign at the beginning of the week condemned Town to their biggest defeat since the mauling handed out by Cray last season with his one man goal show. Fittingly he finished with the best goal of the day,

Steve Aslett’s fee kick consolation aside, which left manager Toms both fuming and speechless at his side’s dismal showing.

Whitstable had the look of a much loved family car with the engine just ticking over, just about plodding along, whilst the home side’s young players were all driving Ferrari’s. All were sleek, quick of feet and mind and as smooth as silk.

Even before Prett had clicked from first into top gear he was twice denied, once bravely by Tony Reynolds, the young keeper diving at his feet when ready to shoot, the second a Gary Hemens block keeping the score nil apiece.

In the 5th minute Whitstable allowed Dave Martin to run almost unimpeded to the by-line, his looping cross was nodded in by Prett who himself was unchallenged to score goal number one.

In reply Town’ best efforts for the second week running coming via Marc Seager free kicks plus a total of eight first half corners, but Whitstable seemingly lacking the guile to feed the ball through to the front pairing of John Utterson and Andy Constable to open up the home side in the same fashion Slade Green tormented Town.

Andy Kier and Martin Collins for Town were just inches wide with powerful headers both from Seager’s in swinging corners, Utterson, when in on goal was denied by some super defending by Ryan Haskins and all Town’s first half efforts were in vain.

Within a couple of minutes of the restart Town went 2-0 down, Seager’s attempted defensive header from a corner landed straight to the feet of Tony Weir who blasted the ball past Reynolds from just yards out. Steve Aslett and Stuart Munday replaced Micky Lane and Lee Whitehead, Aslett involved almost at once with some deft touches and testing tackles. It was Aslett who Whitstable some semblance of hope after Utterson had been fouled on the edge of the home sides box. The young midfielder and Seager both standing together over the ball after kidded the defence that Seager was favourite, only for Aslett to slot the ball to the left of keeper Paul Vines goal to give Whitstable some semblance of hope.

It prove to be a false dawn as Prett scored in the 60th minute to make it 3-1, the ball slid through by Ryan Haskins for Prett to score from close range. His third goal in the 68th came from keeper Tony Reynolds weakly thrown ball to Gary Hemens left his defence stranded, Haskins again the provider, Prett finishing with ease. Ryan Davies replaced Hemens, Davies showing he was willing to battle to lift the side, despite the seemingly lost cause.

At 4-1 up and Whitstable still pressing to get something from the game, gaps big enough to drive a team coach through were appearing all over the pitch. Prett’s forth was another easy nock in with just a hint of off side, Whitstable defence unable to cope with the home sides quick passing and neat running off the ball.

In between all the action Tony Reynolds saved two more certain goals with flying saves as Slade Green started to over-run Whitstable’s increasingly beleaguered defence.

Nearly scoring enough for two match balls, Prett round his day off with a cracking shot after a good patient build up by his team mates gave him the space to beat Reynolds for the home sides best win for many a day.

I have to ask myself were Slade Green that good, yes by the goal tally 6 to 1, but Town allowed them to run at their defence with ease, which from the midfield back lacked positional skills. Utterson and Constable never received the type of ball that could undo the home side’s defence, Prett had a golden day and nothing should be taken from his first class display, but overall Town were very poor.

Next weeks F.A. Vase game could take on an importance beyond the recent results in the league, nine games gone and just 9 league points, with only two wins is just not good enough for the side that finished sixth. It could just be the game of Matt Toms season…

Whitstable Town: Reynolds: Wickett: Kier Collins Skinner: M Lane: Seager (captain): Whitehead: Hemens: Constable: Utterson:  Subs: R. Davis: Munday: Aslett