Vital Football

Latest Wycombe Wanderers News

Wycombe open their account against Shrimpers

Wycombe open their account against Shrimpers

Wycombe Wanderers collected their first point of the season after a 1-1 draw with Southend United at Adams Park this evening.



Manager Peter Taylor made no changes to the team that started against Leeds United on Saturday and the Chairboys lined up in a 4-5-1 (4-3-3) formation as follows:

Shearer

Smith (22) Duberry Oliver Woodman

Zebroski Mousinho Montrose Westlake (59) Phillips

Harrold (67)

Subs: Young Westwood Johnson Green (59) Spiller Pittman (22) Beavon (67)



The fact that the Shrimpers could afford to leave former Wycombe favourite Kevin Betsy and last season's impressive loanee Lee Sawyer on the bench tonight was a clue as to the relative strength of the two sides.

The following ninety minutes of football only served to reinforce this view as the visitors slick passing football contrasted vividly with the Chairboys more agricultural style.

While the Shrimpers tended to play the ball on the deck, relying on their superior technique and movement off the ball to carve a path to goal, Wycombe regularly resorted to the long ball, often in the direction of Matt Harrold, but frequently to no one in particular.

Fortunately for the home side, Southend lacked a cutting edge tonight and after swapping set-piece goals, the two sides shared the points.

The early stages belonged to the Shrimpers, with Wycombe restricted to two long-range efforts from midfielder Lewis Montrose.

The 4-5-1 formation which worked so well in the first-half against Leeds on Saturday was clearly not working tonight as lone target-man Matt Harrold was well marshalled by the Shrimpers and struggled to hold the ball up and bring others into play.

This handed Southend the lion's share of possession although Harrold did have a chance to open the scoring when he narrowly failed to connect with a Matt Phillips cross after a quick break from the Chairboys.

After 22 minutes, Peter Taylor introduced Jon-Paul Pittman to play alongside Harrold at the expense of young right-back Adam Smith. Whether this was tactical or enforced through injury wasn't clear, but the youngster had received treatment shortly beforehand. John Mousinho moved into defence and Wycombe changed to a 4-4-2 formation.

Pittman's arrival gave Wycombe a boost and when his pass found Matt Phillips ten minutes from the break, only a fine save from Shrimpers' keeper Steve Mildenhall prevented the youngster's powerful drive from finding the net.

The opening goal came after 41 minutes when Matt Harrold rose to meet Phillips' corner, directing a fine header past Mildenhall's despairing dive.

The home crowd were galvanised. Southend may have played the prettier football, but Wycombe had the all important one-goal lead. Unfortunately, whereas last season that usually meant curtains for the opposition, this season it's nothing to get too excited about.

The equalising goal came in first-half stoppage time following a sustained period of Southend pressure, during which a packed Wycombe defence couldn't find an outlet and kept giving their opponents the ball back.

A short corner was crossed into the box by Simon Francis and as the Chairboys ball-watched, the unmarked Jean Francois Christophe stole in to powerfully head the ball home.



Wycombe started the second-half brightly with Jon-Paul Pittman and Matt Phillips both trying their luck on goal while at the other end Franck Moussa had a fierce shot turned over the crossbar by Wycombe keeper Scott Shearer.

More slack defending gave Dougie Freedman a golden opportunity after 56 minutes but he contrived to send his close-range header over the bar.

Southend were on top again now and Wycombe were resorting to long clearances out of defence despite the fact there was no one further up the field to collect them. Indeed, needlessly giving the ball away was a regular feature of the Chairboys play this evening.

The introductions of Stuart Green and Stuart Beavon for Ian Westlake and Matt Harrold, gave Wycombe a little more guile to their play and when Beavon's neat pass put Pittman through on goal after 68 minutes the crowd roared the little striker on.

The roars became howls of rage moments later when last-defender Matt Heath scythed Pittman down and the less than courageous referee opted to turn a blind eye and wave play on.

Justice may have been done a little later when Freedman burst into the Wycombe box and went down under a challenge from Lewis Montrose only for the referee to ignore his protests. I couldn't tell if it was a genuine penalty claim or not.

With two minutes to go, the Shrimpers almost got the winning goal they probably deserved on the balance of play. The ball broke to Lee Barnard inside the Wycombe box with keeper Scott Shearer stranded in no-man's land, only for the striker to snatch at his shot, hooking it over the crossbar much to the relief of the Adams Park faithful.



As you would expect of a side that have finished in the top-eight for both of the last two seasons, Southend looked a better team than Wycombe. A point should therefore be considered a good result for the Chairboys, but it's hard to be too enthusiastic after some of the basic errors and sloppy passing seen tonight from a team who still appear to be searching for a comfortable formation.


Man Of The Match

Michael Duberry







Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:Len
Date:Wednesday August 19 2009
Time: 2:49AM

Login to post a comment

Recent Wycombe Wanderers Articles

More Reliable Than A League 2 Octopus? (20/1/17)

A new season and finally a new special computer crunching the numbers to determine the final League Two positions for 2016/17.

Preview: Luton Town v Wycombe Wanderers

Adams Park - Saturday 21st January 2017 - 3.00pm

League Two Gets Late Final Day Kick Off

Yesterday the Football League confirmed that the final day fixtures for all League Two clubs in 2016/17 would kick off at 5.30pm.

Riley Explains Postponements

It doesn't happen often in the Premier League or Championship thesedays, but League's 1 & 2 still suffer the odd postponement owing to the weather and Mike Riley...

Archived Vital Wycombe Articles

Vital Wycombe articles from

Site Journalists

Len
Editor email
Profile
Benny
no email
Profile
Dale Jenkins
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

Who was your Man of the Match against Yeovil?
Suggested By:
Blackman9%
Jombati4%
Stewart0%
Pierre2%
Jacobson2%
Gape44%
O'Nien11%
Wood4%
Weston2%
Akinfenwa20%
Cowan-Hall2%

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Doncaster 26 17 4 5 55 19
2 Plymouth 25 16 3 6 51 14
3 Carlisle 26 12 11 3 47 11
4 Portsmouth 26 13 6 7 45 14
5 Wycombe 25 12 6 7 42 6
6 Luton 25 11 8 6 41 13
7 Colchester 26 11 7 8 40 10
8 Cambridge 25 11 6 8 39 9
9 Barnet 26 10 9 7 39 0
10 Exeter 25 11 3 11 36 9
11 Grimsby 26 10 6 10 36 2
12 Blackpool 25 9 8 8 35 11
13 Crawley 25 10 5 10 35 -7
14 Mansfield 26 8 10 8 34 -3
15 Stevenage 26 10 3 13 33 -4
16 Yeovil 25 8 7 10 31 -3
17 Morecambe 25 9 4 12 31 -11
18 Crewe 26 6 10 10 28 -11
19 Hartlepool 26 6 9 11 27 -11
20 Leyton Orient 26 7 4 15 25 -11
21 Accrington 25 6 7 12 25 -11
22 Cheltenham 25 5 9 11 24 -10
23 Notts County 26 6 5 15 23 -20
24 Newport 25 4 6 15 18 -16
Vital Football Comment
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
Write for Vital Football

Recent Wycombe Wanderers Results (view all)

Wycombe Wanderers Fixtures (view all)

Jan 21 2017 3:00PM : Luton Town (H)
Sky Bet League Two
Jan 28 2017 3:00PM : Tottenham Hotspur (a)
FA Cup
Jan 31 2017 7:45PM : Exeter City (a)
Sky Bet League Two
Feb 4 2017 3:00PM : Portsmouth (H)
Sky Bet League Two
Feb 7 2017 7:45PM : Colchester United (a)
Sky Bet League Two
Feb 11 2017 3:00PM : Stevenage (a)
Sky Bet League Two

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.WhiteHorseWycombe1
The Vital Football Members League