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Boro a tough test for resurgent Blues

Boro a tough test for resurgent Blues


Wycombe Wanderers entertain Stevenage on Saturday in their 23rd league game of the season.

The league table currently shows Wycombe in 20th place with 20 points and Stevenage in 6th spot with 35 points, both sides having played 22 games.


Wycombe Home Record....W 3 - D 2 - L 6 - Pts 11...Ppg 1.00 (Rank-17)

Stevenage Away Record...W 4 - D 4 - L 3 - Pts 16...Ppg 1.45 (Rank-10)


A dramatic upturn in results has seen Wycombe collect seven points from their last three games to climb out of the relegation zone for the first time in over two months.

Crucial victories over fellow strugglers Chesterfield and Exeter either side of a creditable draw at Carlisle have made it a very Merry Christmas for Blues' fans. Only Sheffield United have banked more points in December, and only Saturday's opponents Stevenage have matched Wycombe's tally of seven.

Chasing a third consecutive promotion, Graham Westley's Boro haven't only found success this month, but are enjoying a twelve-match unbeaten run in all competitions since losing 2-1 at Huddersfield Town on October 8th.

Westley employs a much tougher training regime than most football clubs and as a result his Boro side have a particular reputation for physical strength and staying power among other traits.

When he's not in the gym or on the training ground with his players, Westley runs a company called Aimita, which stands for "attitude is more important than ability." It's a corny slogan, but it shows us that the Boro boss puts just as much emphasis on mental strength and forging a strong team spirit.

The following stats are testament to Boro's resilience.....

Since they were promoted to the Football League, Stevenage haven't lost a single game after taking the lead. That spans the whole of last season and half of the current campaign which is a remarkable achievement. Let's hope they don't score first.

With regard to their superior stamina....54% of Boro's 41 goals in all competitions have been scored in the final thirty minutes of their matches.

Out of interest, 38.8% of Wycombe's 36 goals have arrived in the opening half-hour, 30.6% between 30 and 60 minutes and 30.6% in the final half-hour.

Stevenage come into Saturday's match on the back of a remarkable 6-1 victory at Colchester United. Funny yes, but a tad worrying too.

The fact that Wycombe's tough tackling central midfielders Stuart Lewis and Martin Rowlands will both miss Saturday's game is another cause for concern.

An in-form Matt Bloomfield will occupy one spot and Blues' boss Gary Waddock has told the local press that summer signings Ben Harding and John Halls are both up to the task of deputising for Lewis. The Wycombe fans aren't so sure.

With only 20 goals conceded, Stevenage have the second-best defensive record in the entire division, but that won't deter Marcello Trotta, Stuart Beavon and Anthony McNamee who are in great form for the Blues with eleven goals between them in the last four games.

Things are certainly looking up for Wycombe, but this promises to be a very tough test.


Here are some stats…


Stevenage's last five games (All Competitions)

Lg1: Walsall (H).............Drew 0-0

FAC: Stourbridge (A).......Won 3-0

Lg1: Preston (A).............Drew 0-0

Lg1: Tranmere (H)...........Won 2-1

Lg1: Colchester (A)..........Won 6-1



Wycombe's last five games (All Competitions)

Lg1: Bournemouth (H)........Lost 0-1

Lg1: Franchise (A)..............Lost 3-4

Lg1: Chesterfield (H)..........Won 3-2

Lg1: Carlisle (A)...............Drew 2-2

Lg1: Exeter (H)..................Won 3-1



Stevenage Goal Stats (26 games in all Competitions)

Goals Scored (Total)............Lg: 32...Cups: 9...Total: 41

Goals Conceded (Total)........Lg: 20...Cups: 6...Total: 26

Goals Scored (Away)...........Lg: 15...Cups: 6...Total: 21

Goals Conceded (Away).......Lg: 9.....Cups: 2...Total: 11

Clean Sheets.......................Lg: 7.....Cups: 2...Total: 9



Wycombe Goal Stats (27 games in all Competitions)

Goals Scored (Total)..............Lg: 28...Cups: 8.....Total: 36

Goals Conceded (Total)..........Lg: 37...Cups: 13...Total: 50

Goals Scored (Home).............Lg: 14...Cups: 8.....Total: 22

Goals Conceded (Home).........Lg: 17...Cups: 11...Total: 28

Clean Sheets.........................Lg: 1.....Cups: 0.....Total: 1



Stevenage's Top Goal Scorers - (All Competitions)

Chris Beardsley..........9

Mark Roberts..............5

Scott Laird..................5 (inc 2 pens)

Michael Bostwick.........3

Craig Reid..................3

Six other players have each scored 2 goals.

Three other players have each scored 1 goal.



Wycombe's Top Goal Scorers - (All Competitions)

Stuart Beavon..........11

Marcello Trotta..........6

Scott Donnelly...........5 (inc 2 pens)

Joel Grant.................3

Two other players have scored 2 goals.

Six other players have each scored 1 goal.



Stevenage Shooting (Top-3) - All Competitions

Chris Beardsley.....21 on-target...15 off-target...0 against woodwork

Michael Bostwick....17 on-target...14 off-target...0 against woodwork

Craig Reid.............18 on-target.....4 off-target...1 against woodwork



Wycombe Shooting (Top-3) - All Competitions

Stuart Beavon........31 on-target.....6 off-target...0 against woodwork

Joel Grant..............15 on-target...13 off-target...0 against woodwork

Scott Donnelly........13 on-target...11 off-target...0 against woodwork



Shooting (Club) - League Games Only

Stevenage....122 on target...88 off target...5 against w'work (Rank-18)

Wycombe.......97 on target...96 off target...4 against w'work (Rank-21)



Most Assists

Stevenage - Lawrie Wilson..........6

Wycombe - Beavon & Sandell......3



League Form Guide

All Season


Stevenage....Pld: 22...W: 9...D: 8...L: 5.....Pts: 35...Pts per game: 1.59

Wycombe......Pld: 22...W: 5...D: 5...L: 12...Pts: 20...Pts per game: 0.91



Last Five league Games

Stevenage......DDDWW - 9 points (Rank-6)

Wycombe.........LLWDW - 7 points (Rank-12)



Last Five League Games (Away)

Stevenage.....WWDDW - 11 points (Rank-4)



Last Five League Games (Home)

Wycombe..........LLLWW - 6 points (Rank-14)



Against Top Half Opposition

Stevenage....Pld: 11...Pts: 17...Pts per game: 1.55...(Rank-4)

Wycombe......Pld: 11...Pts: 8....Pts per game: 0.73...(Rank-18)



Against Bottom Half Opposition

Stevenage.....Pld: 11...Pts: 18...Pts per game: 1.64...(Rank-14)

Wycombe.......Pld: 11...Pts: 12...Pts per game: 1.09...(Rank-21)



Previous Meetings

2010/11 LG2: Stevenage 0 Wycombe 2

2010/11 LG2: Wycombe 0 Stevenage 1



The Man In The Middle

Saturday's referee is Robert Madley from West Yorkshire who was promoted to the National List of Referees in 2010. Earlier this season he took charge of Wycombe's 2-0 defeat at Tranmere Rovers. So far this campaign he's issued 1 red and 35 yellow cards in 18 games.



Prediction

Wycombe 1 Stevenage 2

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

Writer:Len
Date:Thursday December 29 2011
Time: 1:50AM

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