Matchday Essentials 2002-2003 Click here for the latest match previews and reports
Click here for Quick Guide QPR 2 Click here for your Rough Guide to Wycombe Wanderers
Wycombe Wanderers 1
Thursday 26th December 2002
Football League Division Two
Wanderers Huddle
Wanderers Boxing Day Huddle - Team spirit was there but the result wasn't.
Jonny Dixon scored on his full Football League debut but two sloppy goals conceeded in the first half saw Wanderers go down to a Rangers side without a League win in ten.
Team news saw Frank Talia take over in goal from the injured Martin Taylor. Chris Vinnicombe remained sidelined so Ijah Anderson filled in again at left back but Keith Ryan was retained at right-back with Danny Senda left on the bench. Youth Teamer Jonny Dixon got his first start after Craig Faulconbridge cried off with illness.
It was Wanderers' defensive performance that will have raised concerns again. They were made to look flat footed on several occasions and only saves from Talia coupled with some comedy finishing from the home side prevented the goals against column taking a bigger knock.
Last season's encounter at Loftus Road saw Wanderers reduced to nine men and with card happy Steve Bennett in charge of this game that danger loomed again. However, the official took the lenient approach in the opening seconds when he gave Anderson a talking to after a late challenge on Marc Bircham. There was no such luck for Bircham and Paul Furlong on five minutes when they were both shown yellow cards for their involvement in a challenge on Talia. The Aussie 'keeper had done exceptionally well to push the ball away from the feet of on loan Watford 20 year old Lee Cook with Rangers laughably claiming a penalty.
However, Matthew Rose was first to take advantage of Wanderers defensive relapse on 12 minutes when he was allowed to run through from left-back position, play a one-two with Kevin Gallen and then slot the ball home from the left edge of the Wanderers penalty area.
Wycombe worked out their first real chance on 24 minutes when Paul McCarthy saw a shot from the right edge of the six yard area blocked after Stuart Roberts and Keith Ryan had worked the ball across from the opposite flank.
From the resulting corner Ryan got contact at the far post and Dixon was unlucky as he tried to shot on the turn. Another corner from the right a minute later could have seen Wycombe draw level. Simpson played the ball to a waiting Roberts and McCarthy will know he should have hot the target with a header when the curling cross fell to him in a central position.
Rangers doubled their lead on 30 minutes when Ryan was penalised for a handball on the Rangers left. Richard Langley swung in the free-kick later and Wanderers were left ball watching again as Kevin Gallen was allowed to volley home at the far post.
Roberts was unlucky to be booked for diving over a Shittu tackle on 36 minutes, while Darren Currie's speculative effort from the left wing was the closest Wycombe came to troubling Rangers again before the break.
Half-time QPR 2 Wycombe 0
Wanderers were improved team after the break. Danny Senda came on for Danny Bulman with Keith Ryan reverting back to midfield. It was revealed after the game that Bulman had not trained all week due to his partner giving birth two days previous.
With four minutes of the re-start Dixon had a great chance to score as he out-stripped his defender following a through ball but Culkin managed to tip the ball wide for a corner on the right. It was the first of a succession of corners from Wycombe but they were unable to make them count.
Celebrations following Jonny Dixon's goalSenda's cross from the right on 53 minutes presented Currie with a glorious chance at the far post but 'Ruby' completing mis-kicked in front of the travelling contingent from Wycombe. Currie shot high of the target on 69 minutes after Dixon had played the ball through from the right channel.
After Rangers substitute Wesley Daly shot just high of Talia's crossbar on 71 minutes it was Wanderers who created again when Currie's flick through set-up Andy Rammell but the resulting lob ended on the top of the Rangers net.
Currie was replaced soon after by Lewis Cook and then after a knackered Roberts was swopped for Roger Johnson, Wanderers got a goal back. Johnson was asked to play in a front three but he had only been on the field for a few seconds when Dixon ran onto a through ball from Rammell and flicked the ball past Culkin from the edge of the penalty area before enjoying the celebrations in front of the Wycombe fans.
But there was no dramtic comeback for Wycombe and Rangers' Andy Thomson pulled an effort wide on 83 minutes and only a series of comical misses in the 86th minute prevented Rangers from adding to their goal tally.
This game marked the half-way point in the 2002/3 League campaign with Wycombe in 14th place with 27 points from 23 games. At the same stage last season Wanderers had accumulated 38 points and were in 6th place.
Full-time QPR 2 Wycombe 1
Wycombe: : Talia, Ryan, Anderson, McCarthy, Rogers, Currie (sub 75 Cook), Simpson, Bulman (sub HT Senda), Roberts (sub 79 Johnson), Dixon, Rammell - subs not used: Brown Thomson
Yellow Cards: McCarthy, (foul 35), Roberts (diving 36),
QPR: Culkin, Forbes, Shittu, Carlisle, Palmer, Cook (sub 82 Thomson), Langley, Rose, Bircham (sub 62 Daly), Gallen, Furlong (sub 82 Angell) - susb not used: Day, Murphy
Yellow Cards: Furlong (dissent 5), Bircham (unsporting behaviour 5), Shittu (foul 61)
Referee: Steve Bennett (Kent) Attendance: 14,874 (approx 1600 away end)
Interactive Stats
Match and players
All the Wycombe results, scorers, team line-ups and statistical breakdown of the current season - FULLY INTERACTIVE to your heart's content.
Latest Table and form Updated table with results archive of ALL Division Two games plus form guide and previous meeting between ALL clubs for the past four seasons.
Squad Info
Quick Links

Chairboys on the Net - click here to reload from the top
Match Report Archive.
Current season plus all matches back to July 1996 >>>
Click here for Quick Guide Quick Guide to The R's
Past meetings, connections, web links and more
Visit The Gas Room"Was our reporter at the same game? Have your say!!"
Click here other results on this dayOn This Day
More Wycombe results from 26th December
All match reports © 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999,2000, 2001, 2002
Chairboys on the Net - Not to be reproduced without our written permission.

Back To Top

Chairboys on the Net All there is to say and know about Wycombe Wanderers on the Internet