Writer: Adam Clift
Date:Saturday March 9 2013
Rochdale 4 Wycombe Wanderers 1
Vital would like to thank guest writer Adam Clift for the following report.
An early Stuart Lewis goal wasn't enough as an abysmal Wycombe display was punished by goals from Ian Henderson, an own goal and a brace from George Donnelly.
The blues were looking to put some off the field issues from the past week behind them as they aimed for a third consecutive win. Player/manager Gareth Ainsworth made just the one change to the team that claimed a late victory against Fleetwood a week earlier, as he brought the fit again Joel Grant in for himself. Leon Johnson and Marvin McCoy replaced Kortney Hause and Matt Spring on the subs bench.
If the truth be told Wycombe never really got going, and it was Rochdale who looked the more likely in the opening fifteen minutes as Andrew Tutte and Terry Gornell both tested Jordan Archer, who made a fine double save. The on loan Tottenham keeper was beaten minutes later though as Bobby Grant's superb free-kick cannoned back off the crossbar.
But it was the blues who struck first. Matt McClure seemed to trip Shane Cansdell-Sherriff, but with no whistle, the ball fell to Stuart Lewis who drove low and hard into the bottom corner to claim his first goal of the campaign, his delight clear to see.
The lead was short lived, and when a Tutte free-kick wasn't properly cleared, Ian Henderson finished at the back post completely unmarked. Questions were certainly asked about the zonal marking that had been in place for the free-kick, and it wouldn't be the only question asked about this system throughout the afternoon.
The remainder of the first half passed by with very little action. Grant and McClure linked well at times but to no avail and Winfield blocked heroically on two occasions, the second possibly with his hand as the home crowd cried for a penalty.
The half-time break was an opportunity for Ainsworth to rally his troops and wake them up for the second period, but just two minutes after the restart Wanderers fell behind. Another delivery by Tutte caused mass confusion in the Wycombe defence and the ball ended up in the back of the net. It's been credited as an own goal for Michael Harriman, but in all fairness it looked as if it could've gone in off of either Josh Scowen or Jordan Archer.
Goal scorer Lewis was then called into action to clear off the line from Joe Thompson, before Henderson and George Donnelly both tried their luck as Dale looked to build on their lead.
Wycombe then called upon Jo Kuffour and Junior Morias to try and salvage something from the game, and they replaced the ineffective McClure and Morgan. But with just the two Wycombe goals between them, the away support weren't filled with confidence of an equaliser.
However, Morias crossed brilliantly moments after coming on, but neither Kuffour nor Grant managed to get on the end of it. Kuffour also had a half-chance shortly afterwards but decided to try and shoot with his right foot when it would've been ten times easier to put his left foot through the ball. These were rare glimmers for the Blues as Dale were getting the ball down and playing some nice football as the visitors continually struggled to get any sort of foothold in the game.
With twelve minutes left on the clock a Josh Scowen corner came to nothing and Dale broke. Harriman found himself defending against two and Henderson easily slipped through George Donnelly who calmly slotted past Archer.
That effectively settled proceedings, and it was evident that both the Rochdale players and fans were beginning to enjoy their afternoon. And just seven minutes later Donnelly bagged his second as he headed Michael Rose's cross back across goal and past Archer. It topped off a torrid afternoon for the Wycombe keeper, who did seem to be carrying a knock. Ainsworth will be hoping this was nothing too serious with another game in just three days time.
There was still time for Bobby Grant to rattle the woodwork for the second time of the afternoon and in all fairness 4-1 probably flattered Wycombe.
It was a performance associated with the early days of the season and was certainly out of character since Ainsworth has been at the helm. However, Rotherham visit Adams Park on Tuesday so it's an opportunity for Wycombe to put things right almost immediately. We need to remember where we were in November, and despite today's abject performance, just think how far we've come. But there is certainly no getting away from the fact that this was a very poor Wycombe performance.
Ratings: Archer 4, Harriman 4, Winfield 6, Stewart 5, Dunne 5, Grant 6, Lewis 6, Scowen 5, Wood 5, Morgan 4 (Morias 5), McClure 5 (Kuffour 4)
Date:Saturday March 9 2013
Blues sign keeper Horlock (Thursday May 23 2013)
Blues announce friendlies at Staines and Burnham (Thursday May 23 2013)
A Wycombe fan's guide to next season's travel (Saturday May 18 2013)
Lambert to return to Wycombe (Friday May 17 2013)
Wanderers announce another friendly (Wednesday May 15 2013)
Wanderers announce opening and closing friendlies (Tuesday May 14 2013)
Morgan agrees new deal to remain at Adams Park (Monday May 13 2013)
Bloomfield signs up for testimonial season (Thursday May 9 2013)
Blues make a decision on seven players (Thursday May 2 2013)
You can't beat a bit of Bully (Saturday August 21 2010)
|14. Bristol Rovers||46||16||12||18||-9||60|
|Former City defender leads England
» York : 24/05/2013 23:25:00
|RUFC - Ticket Office To Open Saturdays
» Rotherham : 24/05/2013 18:40:00
|RUFC - Evans Delighted To Fetch In Collin
» Rotherham : 24/05/2013 14:27:00
|Midfielder chase still on
» York : 24/05/2013 12:01:00
|Clay shooting for glory
» York : 24/05/2013 11:34:00
|Striker on way to York
» York : 24/05/2013 11:20:00
|Club Keen On Old Boys Return?
» Southend : 24/05/2013 11:04:00