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Brighton and Hove Albion 1
Tuesday 25th September 2001
Football League Division Two
Andy Rammell - picture Paul Dennis Andy Rammell silenced his critics as he scored the goal that earned a point against early pace setters Brighton and Hove Albion. Rambo's goal in the 62nd minute brought complaints from the visitors but there was no doubt that Wycombe deserved at least a point. Nathan Jones had fired Brighton into an 11th minute lead but Wycombe eventually clawed their way back into a game that was played at extreme pace.
Wycombe were boosted by the return of former Seagull, Paul McCarthy. 'Macca' had sat out the last two games with a calf strain but would have been delighted to return against the club where he started out as a trainee.
After the previous Saturday's disappointment at Reading, Sanchez rang the changes in his side. OUT went Jason Cousins, Keith Ryan, Dannie Bulman and Gavin Holligan. IN came Paul McCarthy, Steve Brown, Jermaine McSporran and a first start for on loan Aston Villa striker Richard Walker.
It was Walker who was presented with a golden opportunity after just three minutes when Brown's through ball fell kindly but his contact wasn't clean and the resulting shot skipped past the far post.
The visitors soon showed why they were sitting on top of league as they countered and Martin Taylor had to react to collect a Lee Steele header in the 8th minute. Three minutes later they had taken the lead when Steele's inviting cross from the right bye-line was thumped home at the far post by Nathan Jones.
Wycombe responded directly from kick-off with McSporran getting clear of his marker down the right wing only to see his cross slide along the face of the crossbar and away to safety.
A nice turn from Walker in the 23rd minute to the right of goal opened up the Brighton defence but there was no Wycombe boot to turn in the cross. Three minutes later Darren Currie saw a shot deflected wide following an indirect free-kick given for a foul inside the penalty area on Rammell by Danny Cullip.
Wycombe were now playing with the passion that was sadly missing at Reading and only the legs of Michels Kuipers in the Albion goal prevented Michael Simpson bringing the scores level after Walker had laid the ball off.
However, Wycombe were nearly caught with a sucker punch on the stroke of half-time but Taylor performed his usual heroics to push away Jones' shot at the far post. Wycombe then almost grabbed a goal when McSporran cut in from the right but Kuipers managed to push the shot away and Walker was unable to get to the rebound.
Half-time Wycombe 0 Brighton 1
The game continued in the second-half with its cut and thrust style. Wycombe quickly forced corners in quick succession and then after a sweeping move, Rammell was in the thick of it as he claimed a ball had crossed the line after he put pressure on Kuipers. The Dutch 'keeper reacted to Rambo's claims and ended up in the referee's book.
Wycombe drew level in the 62nd minute when Rammell managed to control the ball just left of centre before bearing down on goal and unleashing a shot that just squeezed in. Albion claimed Rambo had controlled the through ball with his arm but referee Crick thought differently.
It set the game up for a pulsating finish as both sides pressed for a winner. A flurry of substitutions around the 75 minute mark saw Bulman and Emblen introduced for Wycombe. Emblen made an immediate impact when his cross/shot from the right was deflected and then tipped over the bar by Kuipers.
Brighton let some bizarre refereeing decisions get to them as the game drew to a conclusion. Micky Adams was asked to calm down by the 4th official after he saw Chris Vinnicombe's clearance given as a goal kick and then with five minutes left, Mark Rogers lunged at Jones just inside the left edge of the penalty only for referee and assistant to give a free-kick six inches outside. Richard Carpenter blasted over the subsequent free-kick but there was no last minute drama to come at either end. Although, Andy Rammell's 'warm-down' close to the away end, after being substituted, didn't go down too well with the Brighton fans.
Final Score Wycombe 1 Brighton 1
Wycombe: Taylor, Senda, Rogers, McCarthy, Vinnicombe, McSporran, Simpson, Brown (sub 75 Bulman), Currie, Rammell (sub 79 Emblen), Walker
subs not used: Cousins, Ryan, Carroll
Yellow Cards: none
Brighton: Kuipers, Watson, Cullip, Morgan, Mayo, Hart (sub 76 Brooker), Rogers, Carpenter, Jones, Steele (sub 77 Pitcher), Zamora
subs not used: Melton, Wicks, Pethick
Yellow Cards: Kuipers (58 dissent)
Referee: David Crick (Worcester Park) Attendance: 7,097 (1,488 Brighton)
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