07:00PM, Friday 22 October 2021
Jon Underwood and Neil Baker will be hoping new players and fresh legs can drag Slough Town FC away from the foot of the table after such a poor run of form in the National League South.
Last weekend was, yet again, a disappointment for the Rebels after an 85th minute penalty for Billericay Town condemned the side to a narrow 2-1 loss at New Lodge.
As a result, they slip to 20th in the division – one spot above bottom-placed Hemel Hempstead Town – having picked up just one win and two draws this season.
The Rebels’ only victory was inspired by Tom Derry on the first day of the campaign against Chelmsford City. The 26-year-old summer signing, however, was unexpectedly released by the club on Tuesday.
A statement, written by Baker, read: “Unfortunately in football you need to make tough decisions and due to our start, which is not what anyone would have hoped for, we need to be able to try and revamp the squad as much as we can over the next few weeks.”
Speaking to the Express earlier this week, Underwood bemoaned Slough’s result against the Blues and said it is necessary the club introduce a few new faces to bring a halt to their winless run.
“We’re at that stage where we need to shake things up,” he said.
“Neil and I aren’t sitting here thinking we’re miles off it, but at the same time, we’re not getting results.
“Against Billericay, we didn’t do enough to win the game. We didn’t play well in the second half, it looked like we were waiting for them to score, and then we gave away a silly penalty.
“It’s another loss by a fine margin but we can’t be saying this in a month’s time.
“So, we are looking at strengthening the squad, and as you may have seen, we let Tom Derry go yesterday.
“There are no faults in the player's effort, commitment, and attitude – it’s just not really worked for him or us.
“As much as we’re in a rush to get better, we’re not going to rush to bring players in, or keep players, who are not going to improve us.
“Will anyone come in before Saturday? Maybe.
“We’ve got a couple of familiar faces coming back this weekend in Josh Jackman, Guy Hollis, Ben Harris, and Warren Harris. They are four important players who have been vital to our side for a number of years.
“They should all be back in contention to start so that’s a real boost.”
In their eight-and-a-half years at Arbour Park, Underwood admits he and Baker are experiencing one of their most challenging times in management.
However, after reflecting on their previous seasons in charge of the Rebels, Underwood is optimistic they will be able to rectify this campaign.
“In our first year at the club, we were struggling, just like we are now, but managed to turn things around,” he said.
“An impressive run in January took us into the play-offs and, of course, we got promoted.
“So, we've had difficult spells in the past and ultimately come through them. We’ve got to draw on those experiences to get us through this challenging time.
“Football is a big part of my life and Neil's life, and it is something we are very ambitious about.
“We are finding things very tough at the moment, there's no doubt about that.”
Slough Town travel to high-flying Havant and Waterlooville this Saturday. Kick-off is at 3pm.
The UK has voted to leave the European Union in yesterday's referendum - and while the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead fell into the remain camp, Slough voted to support a Brexit.