Date:Thursday November 5 2009
Wycombe Wanderers take on Brighton & Hove Albion at Adams Park on Saturday in the first round of the FA Cup.
Brighton are currently without a manager having parted company with former boss Russell Slade only last Sunday.
While they seek a replacement for Slade, the Seagulls have entrusted team affairs to their Director of Football Martin Hinshelwood who has performed the caretaker role twice before and was also their full-time manager for 14 games in 2002.
Hinshelwood has had mixed fortunes in the hot seat, never having lost a game during his two previous spells as caretaker but having overseen a run of 12 consecutive defeats during his short tenure as full time boss.
The Seagulls were FA Cup finalists in 1983, beating Newcastle United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Norwich City and Sheffield Wednesday, before losing 4-0 to Manchester United at Wembley.
This season Brighton are struggling in League One and currently sit in 20th place with 14 points from their opening 15 games.
Although they've only won three times so far this season, the Seagulls go into Saturday's match with a slight psychological advantage over their opponents.
Having failed to win any of their first 6 games in all competitions, the Seagulls finally got off the mark in September with a 1-0 home win over Wycombe and will no doubt fancy their chances of at least taking the Chairboys back to the Withdean for a replay.
Brighton's last five games
LG1: Yeovil (A).............Drew 2-2
LG1: Gillingham (H)........Won 2-0
LG1: Tranmere (A)..........Lost 2-1
LG1: Oldham (H).............Lost 2-0
LG1: Hartlepool (H)........Drew 3-3
Brighton Goal Stats
League Goals Scored (Total).....18
League Goals Scored (Away)......8
League Goals Conceded (Total).....27
League Goals Conceded (Away)....13
Top Goal Scorers (All Competitions)
Striker: Nicky Forster..........9
Striker: Liam Dickinson.......4
Five other Brighton players have each scored 1 goal.
Nicky Forster..........16 on-target....13 off-target.....0 against woodwork
Liam Dickinson.........9 on-target....14 off-target.....1 against woodwork
Dean Cox................6 on-target.....9 off-target......0 against woodwork
Wycombe Wanderers are currently searching for their first victory since August,
New manager Gary Waddock has been in charge for three games now and although there is a noticeable improvement in the team's style of play, the bad luck, wastefulness in front of goal, lapses of concentration in defence and ultimately the results, are the same as they were under previous boss Peter Taylor.
It seems the gods of football aren't smiling on the Chairboys this season. Peter Taylor had very little luck and new boss Gary Waddock will no doubt feel his two draws and one defeat could so easily have been three wins and 9 precious points.
If it wasn't for an almost laughable goalkeeping howler against Colchester, a soft stoppage-time set-piece equaliser from Exeter and an unbelievable reversal at home to Walsall last Saturday, everyone would be hailing the arrival of a new messiah at Adams Park.
As it stands, Wycombe are rooted to the bottom of League One with only 8 points from 15 games and Waddock must be acutely aware that his side need to start winning again soon.
The FA Cup offers the Chairboys a chance to get their show back on the road without any of the pressure they must be under during league games and the Wycombe boss has made it plain that he wants to progress in the competition.
Speaking to his club's Chairboys Player website service, Waddock said:
"We want to start winning football matches, whether it's in the league or the cup, we want to start doing it sooner rather than later."
"If we win against Brighton that will give the players some confidence and belief, and we need to start winning - it's a habit - winning or losing."
"We want to get into the second round, make no mistake about that. We won't take the game lightly, so we'll pick a team we feel is capable of winning the game."
The Chairboys may not have reached the FA Cup final like Brighton, but they came close, losing 2-1 to Liverpool in the semi-final as recently as 2001.
Wycombe have not yet revealed whether on-loan players Scott Davies and Kevin Betsy will be permitted to play in Saturday's game.
Wycombe's last five games
LG1: Orient (H)...............Lost 1-0
LG1: Gillingham (A).........Lost 3-2
LG1: Colchester (H) ......Drew 1-1
LG1: Exeter (A).............Drew 1-1
LG1: Walsall (H)..............Lost 3-2
Wycombe Goals Stats
League Goals Scored (Total).....15
League Goals Scored (Home).....6
League Goals Conceded (Total)....25
League Goals Conceded (Home)...10
Goal Scorers (All Competitions)
Striker: Jon-Paul Pittman.....5
Striker: Matt Harrold...........3
Midfielder: Chris Zebroski....2
Midfielder: Scott Davies.......2
Midfielder: Matt Phillips........1
Striker: Stuart Beavon........1
Striker: Ashley Chambers...1
Defender: Craig Woodman..1
Defender: Leon Johnson......1
Jon-Paul Pittman.....13 on-target.....8 off-target....0 against woodwork
Chris Zebroski........13 on-target.....7 off-target....0 against woodwork
Stuart Green..........10 on-target....10 off-target....0 against woodwork
Last Five Games
Wycombe:........LLDDL - 2 points
Brighton..........DWLLD - 5 points
Last Five Home Games
Wycombe:....LLLDL - 1 point
Last Five Away Games
Brighton:.......DWDDL - 6 points
Recent FA Cup Records
2000/01: Wycombe Semi Final - Brighton 2nd Round
2001/02: Wycombe 3rd Round - Brighton 3rd Round
2002/03: Wycombe 1st Round - Brighton 3rd Round
2003/04: Wycombe 2nd Round - Brighton 1st Round
2004/05: Wycombe 2nd Round - Brighton 3rd Round
2005/06: Wycombe 1st Round - Brighton 3rd Round
2006/07: Wycombe 2nd Round - Brighton 3rd Round
2007/08: Wycombe 1st Round - Brighton 3rd Round
2008/09: Wycombe 2nd Round - Brighton 1st Round
Altogether the two sides have met on 12 occasions with 1 win for Wycombe, 7 for Brighton and 4 draws.
At Adams Park there have been 0 wins for Wycombe, 2 wins for Brighton and 3 draws.
Previous Meetings at Adams Park
1994/95 LCp: Wycombe 1 Brighton 3
1994/95 LG1: Wycombe 0 Brighton 0
1995/96 LG1: Wycombe 0 Brighton 2
2001/02 LG1: Wycombe 1 Brighton 1
2003/04 LG1: Wycombe 1 Brighton 1
The Man In The Middle
Saturday's referee is Simon Hooper from Wiltshire who's in his second season as a Football League referee and has never taken charge of a Wycombe game before.
Date:Thursday November 5 2009
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