Face-To-Face with the Silkmen
Wycombe Wanderers welcome regular rivals Macclesfield Town to Adams Park this weekend in search of their second League Two win of the season. Vital Wycombe takes a look back at a previous meeting between the two sides.
2006 began with the world seemingly at the feet of Wycombe Wanderers. The team had lost just one of its first 25 League Two matches and was sitting pretty at the top of the table, two points ahead of Grimsby Town and five points clear of Leyton Orient in the play-off places. The Chairboys had enjoyed a good Christmas period with a late comeback at Plainmoor to draw 2-2 and then two victories, 4-2 over Leyton Orient in front of the Sky cameras at Adams Park and a 2-1 win away at Bristol Rovers.
The New Year saw old Conference rivals Macclesfield Town arrive at Adams Park on the 2nd of January. The Silkmen were languishing in 16th place in the table and Wanderers manager John Gorman named an unchanged line-up from the side that won at the Memorial Ground on New Years Eve.
The Wycombe line-up was : (4-4-2)
Russell Martin - Mike Williamson - Roger Johnson - Danny Senda
Kevin Betsy - Rob Lee - Matt Bloomfield - Stefan Oakes
Tommy Mooney - Charlie Griffin
Macclesfield Town line-up: (4-4-2)
Andy Teague - Kevin Sandwith - David Morley - Alan Navarro,
Paul Harsley - Kevin McIntyre - Danny Whitaker - Lee Bullock
Jon Parkin - Clive Wijnhard
5,364 fans were in Adams Park but they had no idea of what awaited them. Within three minutes the visitors were in front. Goalkeeper Frank Talia couldn`t hold Danny Whitaker`s low shot and the ball fell into the path of Clyde Wijnhard who had the simple task of tapping into an empty net. It got worse for the hosts on ten minutes when a right-wing corner routine created a shooting opportunity for Whitaker and he smashed the ball through a crowd of players and past Talia to find the back of the net.
If the home fans were stunned they were left pinching themselves three minutes later when Macclesfield made it 3-0. Lee Bullock was given too much time and space down the left flank and he crossed low for Wijnhard to get in front of Roger Johnson and beat Talia with a simple tap-in. The Silkmen should have made it four five minutes later when Paul Harsley`s cross was met by Jon Parkin who crashed his header against the crossbar.
It was too much for Blues` boss Gorman who replaced Rob Lee after just 25 minutes and introduced Clint Easton into the action with the formation switching to 3-5-2. With six minutes it had paid dividends when referee Andy Penn pointed to the spot after Kevin McIntyre had handled the ball in an aerial challenge with Kevin Betsy. Tommy Mooney stepped up to bury the ball past visiting goalkeeper Tim Deasy.
Gorman made another change at half-time with Sergio Torres replacing Matt Bloomfield but the second half started quietly and it was just past the hour mark when the game burst back into life. A hopeful high ball into the area by Danny Senda was headed away by Town defender Andy Teague but it bounced straight to Mooney on the corner of the penalty area and he half-volleyed it back across Deasy where it crept inside the far post to bring the Blues back to 3-2.
Ten minutes later and it was pandemonium within Adams Park. A ball into the box was headed clear by Kevin Sandwith and the ball bounced once before being hit on the half-volley by Russell Martin and the ball flew into the top left hand corner of the net from 25 yards. It was Martin`s first goal for the Wanderers and Deasy didn`t stand a chance. The Wanderers had incredibly come back from a 3-0 deficit to level at 3-3. It got even better on 76 minutes when they took the lead for the first time. Senda raced down the right wing to beat Harsley and his low hard cross was sliced into his own net by Town defender David Morley.
From the sublime came the ridiculous. Within a minute of taking the lead the Wycombe defence went AWOL and allowed McIntyre to run in from the left flank to create a simple chance for Parkin and he tucked the ball into the net past Talia. The home fans couldn`t quite believe what they were seeing and four minutes after drawing level the Silkmen grabbed the winning goal. Whitaker was again given too much time and space to cross and Parkin out-jumped Mike Williamson and Johnson to loop a header over Talia and make it 5-4. There was no way back for the Wanderers this time and they slipped to their first home league defeat of the season.
Manager John Gorman said afterwards : 'It was a difficult one today because it was an emotional rollercoaster. We obviously started off horrendously bad, everything they hit was a goal and they looked good. We got a lifeline with the penalty and to be 4-3 up was amazing and it looked like a fantastic effort for anybody to come back to come back from 3-0 down, to lead 4-3, with the crowd behind them and everybody enjoying it. We were a bit too excited if I'm being honest and maybe that was our downfall again for us. I don't know how they're near the bottom of the table. They must have missed Parkin who is an absolute mountain of a man and he gave us a lot of problems. We're an attacking team and the reason we've got to where we are is because we attack.'