Wycombe Wanderers WYCOMBE - COLCHESTER
WHAT'S THAT ALL ABOUT?
Colchester United
Mark West scores against Col U and a whole new rivalry is startedThe obscure rivalry between Wycombe and Colchester sides sometimes baffles supporters of other teams. The rivalry stems back to a 1985 FA Cup meeting at Loakes Park when then non-League Wycombe humiliated Fourth Division United with a 2-0 victory - Mark West and Simon Read getting the goals.

It was five years before the sides met again, this time in the Conference - United having lost their Football League status at the end of the 1989/90 season. United were head-to-head with Barnet for a quick return to the Football League but Wycombe did them no favours by forcing a  2-2 draw at Layer Road and then winning 1-0 at Adams Park. The following season it was Wycombe and United who went neck and neck for the promotion spot and United's double over The Wanderers was crucial in seeing the Essex side win the Championship on goal difference.

The Football League highlight for Wycombe fans in the games with The U's was the 2-0 victory at Layer Road in March 1994 where goals from Simon Stapleton and David Titterton took The Wanderers to an ultimately successful Division Three Play-Off place.

Colchester won promotion to Division Two in season 1997/1998 after a Play-Off success of their own. The first meeting of the following season was at Layer Road in September 1998 and it was last minute penalty that gifted The U's a 2-1 victory after Mark Stallard had given Wycombe the lead. There was worse to come in the game at Adams Park when nine minutes into stoppage time Colchester again snatched an equaliser through a penalty. The following season another late goal from Lomana Tresor Lua Lua saw The U's win 1-0 at Layer Road against a Wycombe side reduced to nine men by referee Keith Hill.

Steve McGavin - picture Paul DennisBy this time there was the added interest of former Wanderers striker Steve McGavin playing for The U's after his return to Layer Road following brief spells at Southend and Northampton. McGavin scored 17 times at Wycombe in 134 appearances before he controversially quit in January 1999.

Wycombe finally gained a home League victory over The U's toward the end of the 1999/2000 season with an emphatic 3-0 victory - the highlight of which was a stunning 30 yards screamer from Steve Brown.

The League meeting at Layer Road in November 2000 was one of the lamest meetings between the two sides in history. That was until Tony Lock kicked Alan Beeton into the advertising boards to spark a mass brawl that saw both Clubs heavily fined. The football ended 0-0. The return game was the final game of the 2000/2001 season and was another fairly uneventful game, Keith Ryan's 70th minute goal cancelling out after Scott McGleish's opener 18 minutes earlier, as the game ended 1-1.

Wycombe v Col U - you know controversy is only just around the corner!

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