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Against Oldham it was the 'never say die' spirit that was evident again as Wycombe were forced to fight back from going behind to a 25th minute goal from the visitors. The result comes as a massive relief for Wycombe, who due to the incredible cup run had slipped down the table to 17th before this game and were without a home league win in 2001. The Latics were in no mood for favours, going into this game on the back of three straight defeats and they could have taken the lead on 6 minutes when Tony Carss was allowed too much freedom on the right before forcing Martin Taylor into the first of several class saves.
Wycombe settled and started to cause problems for The Latics defence. Essandoh, who had signed a contract to keep him at Wycombe until the end of the season the previous day, looked far more at ease and was unlucky to a header ruled out for offside on nine minutes. A minute later it was nearly another set-piece special when Michael Simpson's delivery from the right was met by the head of Essandoh only for Gary Kelly to turn the shot away.
The visitors continued to look dangerous, particularly down their right flank. On 18 minutes Lee Duxbury saw a shot deflected and from the resulting David Eyres corner, Duxbury saw another shot blocked after a scramble at the near post. Dannie Bulman went close for Wycombe with a 25 yard effort in the 20th minute before the visitors took the lead with a well worked goal. Ex-Plymouth and Northampton striker Carlo Corazzin swept the ball cross field from right to left to Eyres, whose low and hard centre was turned in at the far post by Matthew Tipton.
Despite the goal, Wycombe persevered and were rewarded with an equalising goal in the 37th minute. Essandoh was involved again, nodding on a long clearance to Ryan who flicked on for Simpson who managed to steer the ball home in a congested penalty area.
It could have been 2-1 to Wycombe four minutes before the break when Essandoh beat the offside trap but unfortunately he dragged his shot wide of the far post as he closed in on goal.
Half-time Wycombe 1 Oldham 1
Wycombe continued to dominate into the second-half. Ryan went close twice more in the opening three minute before eventually grabbing the match winning goal on 49 minutes. It resulted from Martyn Lee's cross from the left that eluded Essandoh but Keith Ryan was waiting at the far post to sidefoot the ball into the back of the Valley End net.
Cousins could have extended the lead three minutes later when he directed a header wide of the target from Lee's orbited ball from the left while Simpson will want to forget about his effort from Essandoh's squared ball on 56 minutes. A stunning pass from Cousins in the 68th minute found Chris Vinnicombe out on the left but he shot into the sidenetting with Dannie Bulman waiting in the middle.
The visitors countered with Tipton going close on at least two occasions but they found Martin Taylor in top form again. David Eyres will still be wondering now how on earth the Wycombe 'keeper managed to turn, what looked like a perfectly placed header, away from danger with a breathtaking one handed save in the 76th minute.
But Wycombe were good value for their win and with Dave Carroll and Andy Rammell both being close to a return, the end of season run in seems a little less daunting now - oh and there's the small matter of 'that game' at Villa Park in the FA Cup.
Final Score Wycombe 2 Oldham 1
All match reports © 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999,2000, 2001
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