Posh Too Classy For Chairboys
Wycombe Wanderers went out of the Carling Cup at the first hurdle when they lost 4-0 to Peterborough United at Adams Park this evening.
Wycombe manager Peter Taylor made seven changes to the side that lost at Charlton on Saturday and the Chairboys lined-up in a 4-4-2 formation as follows:
Westwood Oliver Johnson Woodman
Green (45) Mousinho Spiller Bloomfield (21)
Subs: Shearer Smith Cobb Montrose Phillips (21) Zebroski (45) Harrold
Last season's solid defence which was further protected by deep-lying midfielders Tommy Doherty and Gary Holt is a distant memory now. The current Wycombe side are struggling with the basics of defending and are giving themselves an uphill battle every time they take the field by gifting their opponents the lead.
This evening's encouraging start by the Chairboys during which they held their own against Championship opposition and could even have taken an early lead through Jon-Paul Pittman, counted for nothing when they were undone by yet another set-piece after 24 minutes.
Pittman had prodded a shot wide of target after only two minutes and Stuart Green had also fired one past the post as Wycombe matched their visitors in the early exchanges, with Stuart Beavon in particular showing some lovely touches as he carried on the form he showed against Charlton on Saturday.
Then disaster struck when a corner awarded to the Posh wasn't properly cleared, allowing Aaron McLean on the Bye-line to try a shot from an impossible angle, which Wycombe keeper Jamie Young helpfully pushed into the net from his position at the near post. It was yet another in a long line of soft goals that have become a regular feature in recent games.
George Boyd almost made it two shortly afterwards but could only find the side-netting with his shot.
Posh didn't have to wait long though. After 33 minutes, Tom Williams found himself with all the time in the world to pick out a cross, which Tommy Rowe got to first, poking it into the net as Young dived clutching thin air.
A flurry of activity just before half-time saw shots from Stuart Green and Matt Phillips blocked inside the Peterborough penalty area, but when the whistle went for the break, the Wanderers were left ruing their inability to deal with set-pieces and crosses.
Matt Phillips had already entered the fray during the first half when Matt Bloomfield was stretchered off with a suspected broken nose, and at the start of the second half Chris Zebroski replaced Stuart Green.
So, with Phillips and Zebroski reunited with Pittman and Beavon, the four players who had looked so threatening against Charlton on Saturday were given another chance to impress. And in truth, they didn't do a bad job. The one positive at the moment is that we're looking a lot more dangerous in the final third of the pitch than we did last season.
Wycombe's problems didn't lie with their attacking players tonight. Apart from the obvious defensive frailties, it was the central midfield of Mousinho and Spiller who were being given the run-around by a fluid Peterborough side with the impressive George Boyd in particular, being allowed acres of space in which to weave his magic.
A couple of shots from a hungry and determined looking Zebroski and one from the classy Beavon had given the home fans a glimmer of hope before Boyd stepped-up and put the matter beyond any doubt on the hour-mark.
Allowed to advance on goal unchallenged, Boyd had a look and picked his spot before crashing a 25 yard pile-driver past the hapless Wycombe keeper. It was a cracking goal from a quality player but you felt he should have been closed down earlier.
Lee Frecklington thumped in the fourth goal after 68 minutes as the Championship side confirmed their superiority in style.
There was still time for the irrepressible Zebroski to try another couple of shots but when the full-time whistle went, I was just glad we'd kept it down to four.
The world's turned upside down since May. We now have a decent looking attack but the rest is currently a bit of a shambles.
Man Of The Match
Stuart Beavon - by a mile
Excellent control and great link-up play. He creates danger for the opposition and is the least predictable of our players. Should be the first name on the team sheet. And he even had time to clear a shot off our goalline.
Pick Of The Rest