Also from 1997/98
AUG '97 NEWS
HINCKLEY 0 WYCOMBE 0 (Friendly) Tuesday 5th August 1997
A team made up of almost entirely youth team players played out a goalless draw at Leicestershire side Hinckley. The team was complimented by several trialists from the area including Lowcan Costello and John Barrett. Ex-Leicester City defender, Lee Quincey was also given another game to try and impress John Gregory. Wycombe introduced seven substitutes in the second half, including new youth team recruit Grant Smith whose father is ex-Brighton player and teammate of Neil Smillie, Gordon Smith (must score). Smith jnr was released by Brighton last season and Smillie's connection with the south coast side gave Wycombe the opportunity to give him a trial.
Now it's down to the serious action - with the starting line-up at Wigan on Saturday likely to be the side that lost to Reading last Friday. Alan Beeton looks set to make his Football League debut after putting in a couple of impressive perforances in the recent freindlies. Match reports will appear here as normal throughout the season.
WYCOMBE STARTING LINE-UP: Parkin, Costello, Patton, Forbes, Craker, Lamb, Harkin, Wraight, McCoy, Barrett, Quincey. Att: 300 approx.
CHESHAM UNITED 0 WYCOMBE 3 (Friendly) Monday 4th August 1997
Wycombe cruised to victory against Chesham United at the Meadow. Leading 1-0 at half-time, John Gregory took the opportunity to give most of his squad a run out in the last serious friendly before the opening day of the season at Wigan. Paul Read gave Wycombe the lead on 28 minutes after good approach play by Brown and Carroll and although Taylor was tested on a couple of occasions, newly promoted Chesham were no match for their professional counterparts. Alan Beeton set up Mark Stallard from the left on 63 minutes for Wycombe's number 2. The victory was completed when McGavin crossed in from the left for Paul McCarthy to head home on 73 minutes.
Full-time Chesham 0 Wycombe 3
WYCOMBE TEAM: Taylor (sub 68 Parkin), Ryan (sub 45 Quincey), Beeton, Kavanagh, McCarthy, Forsyth (sub 64 Patton), Carroll (sub 45 McGavin), Harkin, Read (sub Stallard 45), Scott (sub 73 Wraight), Brown (sub 45 Simpson)
WYCOMBE 0 READING 1 (Friendly) Friday 1st August 1997
A goal in the first minute was enough to give Reading victory over Wycombe in the last home pre-season friendly of the season. John Gregory stuck with the squad that is likely to take centre stage at Wigan next week - Alan Beeton filling in the left side of defence and Keith Ryan taking the role of right back, both completed 90 minutes, with Beeton having his best game to date for the Wanderers. Steve Brown replaced Carroll at half-time and the lack of creativity in midfield cost Wycombe the chance to snatch anything from this generally dissapointing game.
Reading's ultimately winning goal came after Neville Roach powered through from the left side of midfield. Martin Taylor appeared to be slow coming off his line and Roach nipped the ball low under his body. Wycombe responded without really troubling Reading's 'keeper. On 10 minutes Steve McGavin did a neat jinx in the box with no reward while four minutes later Mark Stallard sent over a hard cross from the left but the lunging Read clipped the ball just wide of the far post. Stallard had another chance again on 32 minutes when Carroll played on but Stallard's insistence to get the ball on his right foot cost him the chance. Carroll provided a good deep cross from the right a couple of minutes before half-time - while Reading could have increased their lead on the stroke of half-time when Roach was checked out by the Wycombe defence. Keith Scott replaced Stallard at half-time and almost immediately gave Wycombe the equaliser when he fired in from the right side but it was a half of few highlights. Taylor made a good save on 68 minutes after a low shot to his right but the lack of commitment from either side made the final whistle from Dermot Gallagher the most pleasant action of the evening.
Full-time Wycombe 0 Reading 1
WYCOMBE TEAM: Taylor, Ryan, Beeton, Kavanagh, McCarthy, Forsyth, Carroll (sub 45 Brown), Read, Stallard (sub 45 Scott), McGavin, Simpson Att:1,980
WYCOMBE 3 QPR 2 (Friendly) Friday 25th July 1997
Five more goals but this time with the ratio in Wycombe's favour. Wearing the smart new yellow and navy quarters for the first time, Wycombe continued with their neat passing game against their Division One visitors. Mark Stallard enjoyed a good night's work, scoring two and also going close on several occasions and 'keeper Mark Taylor had an impressive 45 minutes before being rested and replaced by Brian Parkin. Gregory gave almost a full game to ex-Millwall defender Jason Van-Blerk and Leicester cast off Lee Quincey was used for the final 15 minutes.
Stallard's evening of success began as early as the 3rd minute when his looping cross from the right, clearly his better side, struck the bar. QPR were quick to reply with Gavin Peacock thumping a first time volley just wide of Taylor's right hand post. Wycombe took the lead, however, in the 12th minute when Dave Carroll conjured up a cross from the right and Michael Forsyth dived bravely in to head home. Wycombe maintained the lead until half-time with Taylor commanding his area on most occasions and giving the defence a more solid look.
Half-time Wycombe 1 QPR 0
It was a defensive mix-up that lead to QPR's equaliser in the 52nd minute. The unfortunate Brian Parkin being caught out of his goal and ex-Chelsea man John Spencer finally hitting the ball home from close range. Four minutes later the visitors were ahead when Spencer scored again, this time crashing home a header following a left wing cross from Kevin Gallen. Wycombe's responded well, with first Stallard going close with a 25 yard dipping half-volley, then on the hour mark McGavin worked well on the left bye-line before Steve Brown's mis-hit shot was tucked in by Stallard lurking at the far post. Wycombe claimed victory in the 85th minute when Keith Scott battled his way through from the left side of midfield - the move ending with an unselfish lay-off to Stallard who slotted home again - could this be the start of another great SAS partnership? (you can always dream). Parkin made ammends for his earlier clanger when he made a spectacular one handed tip over in the 90th minute following a right wing cross and he survived the resulting corner (just) as Wycombe hung-on for victory.
Full-time Wycombe 3 QPR 2
WYCOMBE TEAM: Taylor (sub 45 Parkin), Simpson, Van-Blerk (sub 89 Beeton), Kavanagh, McCarthy, Forsyth, Carroll (sub 74 Quincey), Scott, Stallard, McGavin (sub 78 Harkin), Brown (sub 78 Wraight) Att:3,620
WYCOMBE 0 ASTON VILLA 5 (Friendly) Friday 18th July 1997
Yes, Collymore played - No, Scotty didn't do the business as Wycombe were taught a strict footballing lesson by a strong Villa side.A near 7,000 crowd witnessed the season curtain raiser for the Wanderers but despite a neat passing game, Wycombe lacked any bite up front and the final scoreline could have been more. Wycombe fans also had the worry of seeing Jason Cousins carried off in the first half.
Wycombe fell behind in the 13th minute when Martin Taylor advanced well to block a shot from Savo Milosevic but Dwight Yorke put away the loose ball. Three minutes later it was 2-0 when a long range effort from the 7 million pound man, Stan Collymore, was punched sky bound by Taylor and Yorke was on hand again to bundle the ball home on the line.
Wycombe's best spell followed, with Cousins going close after a left wing cross by Brown on 21 minutes. On 30 minutes Scott headed the ball down for Reid but his first time shot was turned away By Oakes. The Premier League side wrapped the game up on 33 minutes, however, when Yorke struck the ball home low to Taylor's right after a move on the Villa right. Cousins injury came on 35 minutes when he stretched for a 50/50 ball out on the left side of the Villa penalty area. The hard man went down clutching his leg and was replaced shortly afterwards by Michael Simpson. Just before half-time Scott broke clear from midfield but saw his stabbing shot from 12 yards pushed clear by the Villa 'keeper. It was Wycombe's last serious assault on the Villa goal.
Half-time Wycombe 0 Villa 3
Villa increased Wycombe's misery in the 58th minute when a right wing move ended with Taylor palming the ball into the path of Collymore who had the easiest of tasks of putting the ball into the empty net. Four minutes later Collymore missed a 'sitter' to delight the cynics in the crowd but we all know he's worth 120 times more than Keith Scott. Gareth Southgate completed the scoring on 74 minutes when he flicked the ball over Taylor from 10 yards (no mention of Euro96 here of course). So, not the best of openings but the pitch looked nice and well done to Villa for sending their first team squad - give us a chance next time.
Full-time Wycombe 0 Villa 5
WYCOMBE TEAM: Taylor, Cousins (sub 36 Simpson), Brown, Kavanagh, McCarthy, Forsyth (sub 64 Beeton ), Carroll (sub 64 Ryan), Scott (sub 63 Stallard), Reid (sub 72 Harkin), Cornforth, McGavin, Brown
VILLA TEAM: Oakes (sub 45 Bosnich), Charles, Staunton, Southgate, Sciemeca, Taylor, Draper, Wright, Milosevic, Yorke, Collymore
Att:6,975 - looked more.
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