All the news stories from February 2017
ACCRINGTON 2 WYCOMBE 2|
(Tuesday 28th February 2017)
Wanderers put to an end their run of six straight defeats in all competitions with a 2-2 draw at a boggy Accrington Stanley. Adebayo Akinfenwa scored twice within two second-half minutes to put Wycombe in the driving seat after Sean Clare had headed the home side into the lead in first-half stoppage time. Akinfenwa scored on 56 and 58 minutes to stun the lowly home crowd of just over 1,000 but Wycombe couldn't hold onto the lead - Matty Pearson heading home a Jordan Clark free-kick at the far post on 63 minutes. However, it was ycombe who looked the team more likely to grab a winner, Akinfenwa, Max Muller and Joe Jacobson all going close - the latter seeing a stoppage claim that a corner had crossed the line, waved away by the officials.
Team news at Accrington saw former Stanley player Joe Jacobson return after his one match ban - with Marcus Bean and Garry Thompson also returning to the starting XI as Sido Jombati, Dominic Gape and Luke O'Nien dropped to the bench. Attendance v Accrington: 1,045 (97 away).
(This was the lowest crowd to watch a Wycombe League game since Wanderers won promotion in 1993. The previous lowest was 1,050 for the game at Accrington in December 2012. Wanderers five lowest attendances of all time in the Football League have all been away to Accrington Stanley).
Final Score: Accrington 2 Wycombe 2
WYCOMBE 1 CRAWLEY 2|
(Saturday 25th February 2017)
Wanderers painfull run of results continued with a 2-1 home defeat to Crawley Town. This latest reverse came after Adebayo Akinfenwa had continued his goalscoring purple patch with a 15th minute back-heel to give Wanderers the lead. Wycombe survived the response from the visitors until two minutes before the break when they gifted Crawley an equaliser. Sido Jombati's throw-in from the left wing back to Jamal Blackman bounced up and was failed to be kept in play by the Chelsea loanee. Then from the resulting corner, Paris Cowan-Hall headed past his own 'keeper at the near post. The goal was credited to Joe McNerney by the press but video replays clearly show the Crawley was not even close to getting a touch. The second-period saw Wycombe step up a gear but without having the final finish. The match looked to be heading for draw until Luke O'Nein conceded a free-kick some 25 yards from the Wycombe - Josh Payne eventually stepping up to send a virtually unstoppable effort into the top left corner of the net.
The defeat, which sees Wycombe drop a place to 11th in the table, came after Gareth Ainsworth made five changes to the side that had lost at Colchester the previous Tuesday - Joe Jacobson (suspended) and Anthony Stewart (knee injury) being the forced changes, plus Sam Saunders, Marcus Bean and Alex Jakubiak dropping to the bench. Coming in was Max Muller, Sido Jombati, Dominic Gape, Matt Bloomfield and Sam Wood. Scott Kashket, Paul Hayes and Aaron Pierre remain on the injury list.
The match was marked in the 5th minute with a minute's applause in memory of former Wanderers defender Paul McCarthy who had passed away the previous week, aged just 45. Attendance v Crawley: 3,206 (161 away).
Final Score: Wycombe 1 Crawley 2
COLCHESTER 1 WYCOMBE 0|
(Tuesday 21st February 2017)
Wanderers dropped to 10th spot in League Two after suffering another narrow defeat - this time a 1-0 reverse at Colchester United, who moved up to 7th place but still only a point ahead of the Wanderers. The only goal of the game came on 13 minutes when George Elokobi scored a wonder goal from out on the right wing - his curling effort nestling in the opposite top corner of the Wycombe net. Wanderers registered 13 shots (7 on target) in their efforts to equalise but frustration set in with two minutes remaining when Joe Jacobson was red carded for a second bookable offence. Jacobson, who would have automatically missed two games for reaching ten yellow cards, will now miss one game and revert back to nine yellows. Team news had seen one change from the side that had lost to Carlisle the previous Saturday - Marcus Bean recalled in place of Dominic Gape.
Attendance v Colchester: 3,031 (275 away).
Final Score: Colchester 1 Wycombe 0
PAUL McCARTHY R.I.P.|
(Monday 20th February 2017)
Shocking news came through on Monday morning of the passing of former Wanderer Paul McCarthy at the age of just 45 following what is being reported as a sudden heart-attack. The central defender spent seven seasons with Wanderers, clocking up over 250 appearances and scoring 19 goals. The highlight of his time at Adams Park was the FA Cup run of 2000/1 where he scored five goals, including crucial strikes against Millwall, Grimsby, Wimbledon and Leicester City. His 120th minute equaliser in the 5th Round replay with Wimbledon at Selhurst Park came 16 years ago to the day that the tragic news was revealed. The former trainee with Brighton & Hove Albion made more just over 200 appearances for the South Coast side before a summer 1996 move to Wanderers for a £100,000 fee. After his release from Wycombe in the summer of 2003 'Macca' joined Oxford United where he spent a season before time with Hornchurch and then Gravesend & Northfleet. He progressed to Club Captain with Gravesend during the time they became Ebbsfleet and lifted the FA Trophy with the Kent side in May 2008. He is survived by his wife and four children. Condolences to his family and friends.
Paul McCarthy - player profile
WYCOMBE 1 CARLISLE 2|
(Saturday 18th February 2017)
Wanderers' poor run of results continued with a 2-1 home loss to 3rd placed Carlisle United. It's now six defeats in the last seven games in all competitions but Wycombe were left kicking themselves for not earning at least a draw against The Cumbrians. Adebayo Akinfenwa gave Wycombe a dream start when he headed home an Anthony Stewart cross from the left on 2 minutes but two soft strikes before the break gifted all three points to United. First on 9 minutes Jamie Procter was left unmarked just outside of the box and his shot crept inside the left-hand upright to level the scores. Wycombe responded with a spell of encouraging play but contrived to concede again on 34 minutes when a hopeful punt forward from the visitors wasn't dealt with by Will De Havilland and the ball ran on to Reggie Lambe who got the vital touch to steer the ball home ahead of Anthony Stewart and Jamal Blackman. The closest Wanderers came to levelling was a second-half header from Akinfenwa that struck the right-hand upright of the Valley End goal. Wanderers fall to 9th spot in the table, still a point off the play-zone and play their game in hand at Colchester on Tuesday evening (21st February). Attendance v Carlisle: 3,858 (354 away).
Final Score: Wycombe 1 Carlisle 2
CREWE 2 WYCOMBE 1|
(Tuesday 14th February 2017)
Wanderers lost in controversial fashion at Crewe Alexandra, a late penalty call going against Gareth Ainsworth's side and incensing both the Wycombe boss and the accused Sido Jombati. The Wycombe defender was adjudged to have fouled George Ray in the 87th minute by referee Michael Salisbury - James Jones grateful to fire home the resulting spot-kick to secure a 2-1 victory for the home side.
After the previous Saturday's 3-0 reverse at Stevenage, Ainsworth made just one change to the starting XI - loanee Alex Jakubiak getting his first start in place of Sam Saunders who dropped to the bench. But there was bad news and misfortune again for Wanderers after just 11 minutes when Chris Dagnall's strike from an angle was pushed onto the underside of the crossbar by Jamal Blackman but the ball was judged to have cross the line following a brief discussion between referee Salisbury and his Assistant.
Wycombe had a decent spell before the break but the half-time loss of Aaron Pierre through injury, followed by Scott Kashket also being withdrawn due to injury, were a blow to Wanderers' chances. However, it was Wycombe who kicked on again and equalised on 75 minutes when Adebayo Akinfenwa swivelled in the box before firing home and levelling the scores. Wanderers then looked the side with more desire to seek victory before disaster struck three minutes from time when Jombati's clumsy challenge proved costly. Attendance v Crewe: 2,896 (169 away).
Final Score: Crewe 2 Wycombe 1
STEVENAGE 3 WYCOMBE 0|
(Saturday 11th February 2017)
Wanderers suffered their biggest reverse for five months and failed to score in a game for this first time in 24 games as they lost 3-0 at in form Stevenage. In a performance described after the game by Gareth Ainsworth as 'not good enough', Wanderers found themselves behind in the 25th minute when the Wycombe defence failed to deal with a cross in from the left - Steven Schumacher getting the vital flick header past Blackman from a yard out.
With Wycombe struggling to create any clear cut chances, the home side doubled their lead in first-half stoppage time when Dominic Gape conceded a penalty after clipping Tom Pett on the left corner of the Stevenage box. Matt Godden sent Blackman the wrong way from the spot.
Stevenage's third goal on 49 minutes summed up Wycombe's day and in particular Gape's. Blackman rolled the ball out to the former Southampton man but he failed to control and was eventually caught in possession by Pett who ran into the box before cooly taking the ball around Blackman and making the score 3-0. The result meant that Wycombe dropped to 8th place on 46 points. Attendance v Stevenage: 2,602 (658 away).
Final Score: Stevenage 3 Wycombe 0
COVENTRY 2 WYCOMBE 1|
(Tuesday 7th February 2017)
Wanderers missed out on a trip to Wembley after going down 2-1 to Coventry City in the Football League Trophy at The Ricoh Arena on Tuesday evening. Slack defending, plus a slice of mis-fortune had gifted the home side a 2-0 lead inside the first 20 minutes but the introduction of Adebayo Akinfenwa at the break saw 'The Beast' reduce the deficit to 2-1 on 55 minutes. However, despite top scorer Scott Kashket also entering the action just before the hour mark and Wanderers enjoying the majority of possession, City held out for their first Wembley appearance in 30 years.
Team news had seen Gareth Ainsworth make six changes to the side that had beaten Portsmouth the previous Saturday and his rotated line-up had the brighter start of the two sides. However, it was City who took the lead in the 11th minute when they were allowed to play the ball in from the right wing before former Wanderers forward Stuart Beavon saw his low angled shot take a heavy deflection off the outstretched leg of Will De Havilland and beat Jamal Blackman. Their lead was doubled on 19 minutes when a ball from the left of midfield by Kyel Reid to the far side of the penalty area, saw George Thomas given too much space by Joe Jacobson, and the City striker smashed past Blackman to make it 2-0.
Those goals seemed to knock Wanderers' early confidence and on a pitch suffering badly from the familiar effects of rugby, chances were few and far between. Myles Weston left footed shot over the cross bar from not much more than six yards on 43 minutes seemed to sum up the half for Wycombe.
Akinfenwa's goal on 55 minutes came when he chested down a ball into the box, turned and hammered the ball high into the roof of the net from around 12 yards. Kashket's appearance a few minutes later gave more hope for Wanderers but it was not to be and it's now back to the challenge of promotion, starting with the trip to Stevenage on Saturday. Attendance v Coventry: 11,672 (600 away approx).
Final Score: Coventry City 2 Wycombe 1
WANDERERS' WEMBLEY AIM|
(Tuesday 7th February 2017)
Wanderers travelled to Coventry City on Tuesday evening (7th February) in the Semi-Final of The Football League, with the attraction of a Wembley final for the winners. The two sides went into the tie on the back of almost mirror-image runs of form. Since losing to Coventry in the group stages of the compeition back on 9th November, Wanderers have lost just two out of 19 games in all competitions. Meanwhile, City have dropped to the bottom of 'League One' following a run of just three wins in 18. The attraction of City reaching Wembley for the first time since 1987 has seen close to 10,000 advance tickets sold.
WYCOMBE 1 PORTSMOUTH 0|
(Saturday 4th February 2017)
Wanderers beat Portsmouth for the first time ever in the Football League after Scott Kashket's deflected shot on 48 minutes proved to be the only goal of tense, high paced encounter. Victory came after Gareth Ainsworth reverted back to the starting XI that had suffered defeat at Spurs in the FA Cup the previous Saturday, thus making seven changes from the line-up that had lost 4-2 in the week at in-form Exeter City.
The winning goal came after half-time substitute Sam Saunders had held the ball up in midfield before spreading play left to Joe Jacobson who then centred to Kashket whose shot from the edge of the box took a decisive deflection off a Pompey defender, leaving 'keeper David Forde wrong-footed. There was blow for Wanderers on the hour mark when Aaron Pierre was forced off injury but replacement Will De Havilland provided admiral cover as Wycombe survived over eight minutes of added time to run out victors and leap-frog the visitors into 6th spot in the table. Wanderers now travel to Coventry City on Tuesday evening in the Semi-Final of the Football League Trophy (kick-off 7.30pm), with the winners earning a place in the Final at Wembley on Sunday 2nd April. Attendance v Portsmouth: 6,028 (1,800 away).
Final Score: Wycombe 1 Portsmouth 0
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