Fixtures
 
Sat 19th August
Emirates FA Cup Prelim
Slimbridge
V
Cinderford Town
3:00 PM
 
 
 
Sat 26th August
EVO-STIK South League West
AFC Totton
V
Slimbridge
3:00 PM
 
 
 
Mon 28th August
EVO-STIK South League West
Slimbridge
V
Shortwood United
3:00 PM
 
 
Match Program
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Slimbridge 1-3 Cirencester Town
Wednesday 16th August
The Swans were very unlucky not to take something from this game after a very impressive performance at Thornhill Park. After falling behind to an Alan Griffith penalty, Slimbridge struck back with a Joe Stokes strike, before Adam Connolly restored the visitor’s advantage before the break. With the Swans bossing the second half, a 90th minute breakaway goal from Ben Whitehead meant the scoreline did not really reflect the balance of play, but Swans Manager Freddy Ward saw many encouraging signs from his young side as they worked their way into the new season.

The first half was two teams going toe-to-toe, and was very entertaining to watch as the game swung from end to end - Jordan Stoddart was off target for the Centurians with an early effort, while Stokes just failed to reach Marley Thomas’ cross a minute later.

Stokes was again unlucky in the sixth minute, charging down a clearance from Ciren Keeper Matt Wieczorek, but he recovered to gather the ball safely.

With 12 minutes gone, Sam Turl had a dangerous effort blocked, before Alan Griffiths took a tumble in the Swans box as he chased a cross from Jake Watts.

Referee Scott Tallis awarded a spot kick for the visitors, and Griffin stepped up to convert the kick to put the Centurians ahead.

Three minutes later, Slimbridge were level - Alex Hoyle played a superb crossfield ball to Marley Thomas, and his cross was swept home by Stokes to level things up.

After Thomas had again gone close, Ciren had their best chance of the half, but Henry Spalding’s header was cleared away by Swans Keeper Ollie Hall for a corner with a good stop. From the resulting kick, Stoddart header over.

Thomas and Stokes were continuing to cause havok in the Ciren back line, and Thomas’ effort which was deflected for a corner was a whisper away from an own goal, while Wieczorek and the post somehow combined to keep out a point blank Stokes header as Slimbridge pressed for another goal.

But the Swans were punished for not taking their chances on the half hour, when Mace’s clearance fell to Adam Connolly on the edge of the box, and he hit a superb strike past Hall to restore the visitors’ advantage, which they held to the break.

The second period started with a bang for Slimbridge, with Sam Turl being denied by the post, as the home side continued to apply pressure.

Luke Payne was next to try his luck with a run and shot that was eventually deflected wide, and Thomas, Stokes and Twyman were all unlucky with chances, with Max Harper-Emerson particularly influential in much of their play.

At the other end, chances for Ciren were few, but Ben Whitehead’s effort on the hour saw a great block from Corey Pring, as the Swans held firm.

Slimbridge Skipper Alex Hoyle had a header cleared off the line, before Nathan Payne was off target as Slimbridge continued to press.

It was cruel on the hosts when a last minute break from Ciren saw Whitehead notch the third for the visitors, but as Manager Freddy Ward noted afterwards ‘It was a good lesson for a young side about the need to take your chances when they arrive’

Slimbridge return to Thornhill Park on Saturday, when they host Cinderford Town in the FA Cup Preliminary Round (3.00pm)

Team: Hall, Turl, Mace, pring, Hoyle, Luke Payne, Twyman, Turner (Nathan Payne 60), Stokes (Wilton 68), Harper-Emerson, Thomas (Thwaite 87)

Supporters Man of the Match: Max Harper-Emerson


 
Paulton Rovers 1-2 Slimbridge AFC
Saturday 12th August
The Swans returned from Winterfield Road with three points after a feisty encounter against a Paulton Rovers side that looked unrecognisable from the side from last season. The hosts took the lead just before the break with a disputed penalty, but two goals in five minutes from Slimbridge substitute Marley Thomas secured the win for the visitors.

Both sides began the game well, and it was clear from the kick off that it was going to be a quick passing game, and the first ten minutes saw the teams cancelling each other out as they eased their way into the new season.

There were then two good chances at either end - James Byrne shot wide for Paulton, and Rich Thwaite had an effort blocked for the Swans.

Slimbridge had a good opportunity to open the scoring on 14 minutes, when Thwaite was fouled on the edge of the Paulton box - Adam Mace’s free kick was saved by Paulton Keeper Kieran Hodges, and Nathan Payne’s attempted follow up was ruled out by the offside flag.

Paulton hit back strongly, and Slimbridge had Ollie Hall’s point blank stop and Thwaite’s subsequent goalline clearance to thank for keeping the scores level before Byrne blasted way too high for the home side in a dangerous passage of play.

As the game ebbed and flowed, Joe Wilton was unlucky at the other end after good work from Harrison Reeves, before Hall and Thwaite again combined to keep Paulton out - this time to stop Dave Sims’ effort.

Jack Twyman was off target with an effort as the Swans pressed forward again, and then Alex Hoyle was next to try his luck, shooting too high in the 35th minute.

With seven minutes remaining in the half Thwaite was penalised for a tackle on Sims in the Paulton box, although the Swans man appeared to make clean contact with the ball. After consulting with his Linesman, Referee Andy Sheppard confirmed his decision as a penalty, and Bryne’s shot just evaded Hall, going in off the crossbar to put the hosts ahead at the break.

The second half saw more of the same - Luke Payne was off target with a header from a Wilton cross, and Reeves had a good effort blocked after Sam Turl had created a good opening on the edge of the Paulton box.

The Swans were gaining the upper hand, and Joe Stokes was unlucky with another 20 yard effort after a free kick was cleared to him on the edge of the Paulton box.

On the hour mark, Wilton was replaced by Marley Thomas, in a move by Manager Freddy Ward that would ultimately have a huge influence on the outcome.

On 65 minutes, Thwaite had a header cleared off the line, and it was beginning to feel as if it would be a frustrating afternoon for the visitors - Thomas had an effort just wide a couple of minutes later after some neat play by Max Harper-Emerson, and then Thomas couldn’t convert a rebound after Hodges made a good save from Mace’s long range effort.

Slimbridge were not having it all their own way though - Omar Simpson shot too high on 70 minutes, and then Hall made a superb stop at his near post to deny Kailen Gould as Paulton continued to look dangerous when they broke as Slimbridge pressed for the equaliser.

The Swans got the leveller their play deserved on 76 minutes, when Sam Turl’s great work down the right saw him feed Stokes - his cross was drilled home by Marley Thomas to even things up.

Slimbridge again went close three minutes later, when Thwaite just missed Harper-Emerson’s dangerous cross, but, two minutes later, Thomas was again on hand to follow up a saved Harper-Emerson shot and put the visitors ahead.

With three minutes remaining, Paulton Keeper Hodges was penalised for handling the ball outside the box as Slimbridge pressed, but Mace’s effort was blocked.

Paulton were appealing for a similar decision to go their way when Hall chased down a through ball and chested it clear from the oncoming striker, but Referee Sheppard waved play on.

As the game went into stoppage time, Thomas’ effort was deflected for a corner as he chased his Hat-Trick, and Paulton Captain Dale Evans was way too high with a 94th minute effort, before the whistle blew on a very tight and entertaining encounter.

Slimbridge kick off their home League campaign on Wednesday, when Cirencester Town are the visitors to Thornhill Park, before hosting Cinderford Town in an FA Cup Preliminary Round game a week today (3.00pm).

Team: Hall, Turl, Mace, Thwaite, Hoyle, Luke Payne, Twyman, Reeves (Turner 79), Stokes, Nathan Payne (Harper-Emerson 59), Wilton (Thomas 60). Subs not used: Pring, Squires

Supporters Man of the Match: Harrison Reeves

 
Programmes for the 2017-8 Season
Friday 11th August
The Evo-Stik Southern league has this season made the decision that programmes can either be made available by home clubs in the traditional printed format, or alternatively as an electronic download from the club website.

Therefore we will not be selling printed programmes for all home games this season. Games where we feel there will be a low demand will only be available this season in their online version.

However, all programmes will be uploaded to this website (whether we physically print or not) and will be available 24 hours before any home game.


 
Freddy looks forward to the new season...
Tuesday 8th August
Swans’ Manager Freddy Ward is delighted with a pre-season campaign that has seen Slimbridge win four of their six pre-season games, with one draw and a single loss to Gloucester City, although he has warned against anyone getting carried away ahead of Slimbridge’s third Southern League season – ‘The slate has been wiped clean now (ahead of the start of the new season), so let’s hope we have a similar set of results after six League games!’

Ward admitted, though, that he was pleased with the progress his young side was making prior to their opening game at Paulton Rovers this weekend. ‘It’s looking very promising – we had a couple of really good tests, which we coped with well, and I’m hoping it bodes well for the season ahead.’

With the Swans adopting a much faster paced passing style than they have played with in recent seasons, Ward is impressed with how the players have coped with the new system – ‘When we press as a team, and break at pace, we’ll certainly cause most teams problems. We’re working hard to give the players the confidence to pass the ball with belief and confidence, and results have been very pleasing so far.’

With a large influx of new players into the squad ahead of the new campaign, how the new arrivals settled into the team would be very important, and again, Ward is pleased with results so far.  ‘The new lads haven’t looked out of place, and with hopefully a couple more additions in the next couple of weeks, I’ll be very happy with the squad I have!’

The other big change at the club in close season has been the arrival of Lee Driver-Dickerson as Ward’s Assistant Manager, and Ward is full of praise for his new Assistant – ‘Dickers coming in to help me has been a blessing – I can’t praise him enough. As I was hoping when I asked him to join the club, he is just what both I and the boys needed.’

Following the game at Paulton, Slimbridge face two big local fixtures – they kick off their home campaign on Wednesday 16th August at Thornhill Park against Cirencester Town (7.45pm) before hosting Cinderford Town in the FA Cup on Saturday (19th, 3.00pm)

Photos below - Swans Management Team Freddy Ward and Lee Driver-Dickerson



 
 
Slimbridge AFC join forces with Kick It Out on Non League Day
Monday 7th August
Slimbridge AFC are delighted to announce that we have been invited by Kick It Out and the Football Supporters' Federation to participate in and contribute to Non League Day on October 7th, when we host Hartley Wintney in the FA Trophy.

For the sixth consecutive year, Kick It Out will be partnering up with Non-League Day to encourage teams across the Non-League pyramid to show their support for Kick It Out and the Fans For Diversity campaign, by hosting a fixture dedicated to their work.
 
Last year, Bath City, Harrogate Town, Jarrow Roofing and Margate all dedicated their home fixtures on Non-League Day in support the work of Kick It Out and the Fans For Diversity campaign.

Anwar Uddin, Diversity and Campaigns Manager said 'Each year we profile five teams - we do website pieces and help with funding and resources for any activity the clubs want to do on the day. This year we are featuring Altrincham, Met Police, Scarborough and Hartley Wintney, so it seemed a good idea to include Slimbridge as well as they were hosting Harley Wintney - We like to have a good geographical spread.

The planned activity around Non-League Day will support the campaign’s values of diversity and inclusion, as well as highlighting the important work Kick It Out does to tackle discrimination through its reporting procedures such as its app. We also work with the clubs involved to set up a unique event in the week before the match which will celebrate diversity in the local community and promote the upcoming Non-League Day game.
 
Players from all teams involved will wear t-shirts recognising Kick It Out and Fans For Diversity during the pre-match warm up, with supporters in attendance welcomed with badges, stickers, wristbands, fan clappers.'

Club Spokesman Tim Blake said 'This is a great opportunity for us to participate in a national event and help raise the profile of the club, as well as contributing to the aims of Kick It Out. We look forward to working with them and the Football Supporters' Federation to make the Hartley Wintney game memorable for everyone who comes along. We have already been in touch with Slimbridge Youth FC, who, of course, help us with our very successful tournaments in the Summer, and they will also be involved in supporting the initiative and helping out on the day, as an important part of the Slimbridge Family. We're very much looking forward to the occasion.’

Further details are currently being worked on and more infomation will be released as things are confirmed.


 
Swans unbeaten in Europe!
Saturday 5th August
Slimbridge returned from International duty with a 3-0 win over Welsh
League Opponents Undy Athletic this afternoon. Adam Mace, Nathan Payne
and Marley Thomas were the goalscorers. A full report to follow, but the
Swans have now ended their pre-season campaign with a record of Played
6, Won 4, Drawn 1, Lost 1, Goals scored 19, Goals against 10.

Leading pre-season goalscorers were Nathan Payne 4, Joe Stokes 3, Marley Thomas and Joe Wilton with  2 each.


 
Undy Athletic 0-3 Slimbridge AFC
Saturday 5th August
The Swans completed their pre-season with a win over Welsh League opponents Undy Athletic this afternoon, with Adam Mace, Nathan Payne and Marley Thomas the goalscorers.

The Swans looked comfortable throughout the game, creating most of the chances, with Goalkeeper Ollie Hall rarely troubled.

Joe Wilton was just off target after good work by Joe Stokes early on, before Alex Hoyle was off target following an Adam Mace Free Kick.

Wilton was fouled on 19 minutes, but Stokes’ effort was saved.

Hall’s first save came on 35 minutes, but the Swans were soon down the other end, with Mace shooting wide, before they took the lead just before half time.

Joe Stokes was felled in the Undy box after chasing down a back pass, and Mace stepped up to convert the penalty and put the visitors ahead at the break.

The second half continued to see Slimbridge dominate - Thomas had a good early effort saved, before Stokes was just too high with another good shot.

Nathan Payne saw his attempt well saved, before finishing off another neat passing move on 57 minutes to double the lead for the visitors.

Marley Thomas finished the game off on 66 minutes with a good strike after being foiled by the Undy Keeper a minutes earlier.

Thomas had another chance at the death to increase the lead, but was too high with his effort, before the final whistle drew the curtain down on Slimbridge’s pre-season.

Manager Freddy Ward was pleased after the game with the campaign, but pointed out that ‘The Slate is now wiped clean. Pre-Season counts for nothing, and we need to carry that form into our League campaign!’

Slimbridge start their third season at Southern League level with a trip to Paulton Rovers next Saturday, before kicking off their home campaign on Wednesday August 16th, when Cirencester Town visit Thornhill Park for an eagerly anticipated local derby.

Team: Hall, Turl, Mace, Hoyle, Thwaite, Turner, Twyman, Luke Payne, Stokes, Wilton, Harper-Emerson Subs: (All Used) Nathan Payne, Thomas, Pring, Reeves

Supporters Man of the Match; Adam Mace

Picture shows Adam Mace converting his penalty for the first Swans' goal


 
Westfields 2-2 Slimbridge AFC
Wednesday 2nd August
The Swans and their Midland Premier League opponents played out a highly entertaining draw this evening at AllPay Park.

The hosts took the lead just before half time through Alex Hainault, but goals from Rich Thwaite and Max Harper-Emerson looked to have nicked the game for the visitors, before Hainault popped up with his second to level the scores in the last ten minutes.

it was a high tempo start from both sides, with Slimbridge having the better of the opening exchanges - Harper-Emerson’s good run saw Stokes’ effort scrambled wide, and the Stokes played a neat 1-2 with Henry Birkett, but left his cross just a little too close to Westfields Keeper Kieron Blackburn.

Blackburn was by far the busier keeper at this point and needed to be on his toes to keep out an effort from Nathan Payne on 16 minutes, which, a minute later, Harper-Emerson just couldn’t reach a through ball from Stokes as the visitors pressed.

On 24 minutes, there was controversy when Blackburn handled a back header well outside his area, as Stokes chased him down, and then tipped a follow up effort from Stokes round the post. In a normal League game, the keeper would have received a red card, but the Swans were disappointed to only be awarded a free kick, which saw Blackburn go down to his left to save Mace’s effort.

Payne and Harper-Emerson combined well down the right again as Slimbridge produced some lovely passing football, with Harper-Emerson’s header just wide, before Rich Thwaite was next to try his luck with a header, only to see his effort drift the wrong side of the post.

Slimbridge’s sense of injustice deepened on 25 minutes, when Stokes was rugby tackled in the Westfields box as he beat his man to try and get a shot on target, but again, the referee was unmoved, and play was allowed to continue.

With their first effort on target, the hosts then took the lead with three minutes remaining in the half - when Hainault found some space in a scramble, and drilled the ball past Ollie Hall to put Westfield into the lead.

Slimbridge continued to press as the second half started, and Birkett was unlucky after picking up a bad clearance and racing through on goal, only to see Blackburn turn his effort past the post for a corner.

On 52 minutes, the visitors were finally rewarded for their enterprise, when Rich Thwaite drove forward from his own half, and, with Birkett and then Stokes instrumental in some lovely passing 1-2’s, found himself through on goal, and made no mistake to level things up.

Jack Twyman was next to try his luck, but his effort was too high, before Matt Reeve at the other end tested Hall with a header, forcing the Swans’ stopper into a good save.

The game was pinging from end to end now, and Harper-Emerson’s good effort that was just too high was matched by Carlos Moriera, whose effort was agonisingly wide at the other end, with both sides looking to regain the advantage.

With Joe Wilton now in the fray, Slimbridge had another attacking option, and Wilton brought a good save from Blackburn. Again, Westfields retaliated, and Hainault header the ball too high when well placed.

With 77 minutes on the clock, Slimbridge regained the lead - Max Harper-Emerson went on another mazy run, and, despite appearing to lose the ball at one point, went all the way through the Westfield defence to strike an absolute peach of a goal.

Four minutes later, the scores were back level - Hainault’s effort took two deflection off Swans’ defenders on it’s way into the net.

Nathan Payne’s effort in the closing seconds could have snatched the win for Slimbridge, but the final whistle brought to an end a very close and highly contested match, which will serve both sides well as they gear up for the new season.

The Swans play their final Pre-Season friendly on Saturday, when they travel over the Severn Bridge to Undy Athletic (3.00pm)

Team: Hall, Turl, Mace, Thwaite, Pring, Luke Payne, Birkett, Twyman, Stokes, Nathan Payne, Harper-Emerson Subs: (All Used) Wilton, Beadle, Turner

Supporters Man of the Match: Max Harper-Emerson


 
 
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