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Oxford United 2
Wycombe Wanderers 2
Saturday 24th August 2013
Football League Two
Wanderers conceeded a goal in the seventh minute of stoppage time as they had to settle for a 2-2 draw at still unbeaten Oxford United. A much improved performance from the Wanderers came after Gareth Ainsworth made five changes to the side that had lost at home to Mansfield the previous week - Sunderland loanee Billy Knott coming in for his debut along side the recalled Leon Johnson, Sam Wood, Dean Morgan and Steven Craig. Anthony Stewart, Matt Spring, Matt McClure, Jo Kuffour and the injured Paris Cowan-Hall were the names left out of the starting line-up.
Former Wanderer Scott Davies had the first real chance of the game when his 3rd minute strike was comfortably collected by Matt Ingram. But Wanderers went on to have the better of the half, with Knott impressive on his debut. It was Knott who was involved in the opening goal, when he headed on Gary Doherty's ball over from the right for Dean Morgan to glance in at far post on 41 minutes.
The game took on a different look five minutes into the second period when Charles Dunne (loaned back from Blackpool following his transfer the previous Thursday) was red carded for an alleged elbow on Alfie Potter - the resulting right wing free-kick from Danny Rose sailing past all and into the far corner of the net. Ten man Wycombe then survived United pressure before regaining the lead on the hour when Morgan converted from the spot after the same player had been adjudged to have pulled back by David Hunt. Wycombe defended again for long periods before finally being undone deep in stoppage time when Johnny Mullins fired home with Wycombe claiming an earlier foul on Sam Wood.
Full-time - Oxford United 2 Wycombe 2
Speaking after the game, Wanderers boss Gareth Ainsworth said "It was a great performance by the boys. We didn't turn up at all last week and this week I made sure the lads knew what they were playing for. For the want of a couple of decisions which I disagreed with, we might have held on and taken the [three] points, but I'm not going to gripe about any refereeing because it's a part of the game. Billy Knott had an immense debut. He has energy, passion, drive, everything that I like in a player, and on top of that he's got Premiership quality with his left foot."
Meanwhile, Sam Wood added to the post match controversy by saying, "It was a foul on me but the ref didn't give it. I'm just about to head it and he [Constable] has come and pushed me in the back. What else could I do? It was right in front of the ref as well but he's seen it as if it wasn't a foul. I definitely felt somebody push me in the back and I couldn't do anymore. All the boys were saying they were waiting for the whistle and didn't hear it. That's where concentration comes in - we should have played to the whistle."
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