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Wycombe Wanderers 1
Crewe Alexandra 1
Saturday 9th November 2013
FA Cup First Round
Wanderers and Crewe Alexendra came away from this game needing a replay at Gresty Road on Tuesday 19th November to settle their First Round FA Cup tie after the two sides drew 1-1 at Adams Park. Former Wycombe loanee Anthony Grant had given the visitors the lead after just four minutes but Wanderers battled back to equalise on 37 minutes through a Paris Cowan-Hall header.
Wycombe went into the tie with two changes to the starting line-up that had drew at Accrington seven days previous - Billy Knott and Matt Spring returning o the side in place of Charles Dunne and Josh Scowen. Scowen was unavailable due to accumulating five yellow cards this season - including one in the abandoned game at Portsmouth.
Crewe, who had beaten Wycombe 4-1 at the same stage the previous season, had the better of the early play and took the lead when Grant curled in a 20 yarder into the top corner of the Valley End net. Grant, who made 49 appearances for Wycombe from Chelsea during the 2006/7 season but without scoring, was swamped by his team mates but refused to celebrate as wildy as his colleagues. Wycombe then weathered a spell of Crewe pressure before battling back and equalising through Cowan-Hall when his flick header from Sam Wood 's cross ended in the bottom corner of the net.
Goalscorer Cowan-Hall was forced off at the break due to what was described as a 'slight calf injury' before a second period that could have seen the tie go either way. One of Wycombe's best efforts came from substitute's Max Kretzschmar free-kick just after the hour mark that was pushed away by Alan Martin in the Crewe goal. Meanwhile, the visitors had a golden opportunity to win the tie in the final minute when Bradden Inman shot over from six yards.
Full-time - Wycombe 1 Crewe 1
Post match reaction:
Commenting after the game, Gareth Ainsworth was enthusing about the game watched by a crowd of just under 2,000, saying "I'm sure people who didn't come will hear about it from the people who did. It was a good exhibition of football, some really good passing stuff. We are growing with each game and getting more confident each time we are out there. The progress we've made in a year and the youth we have is great. I'm really encouraged."
The Wycombe boss added, "It was a little bit nervy at the start. It was a worldy goal from Anthony Grant, but I thought we well deserved to be back in the tie. Being the better team second half people may think we shaded it but I thought Crewe probably had the better of the first half. If I'm being honest a draw was probably a fair result. But I thought we played really well. The way we knocked it about, second half especially, was really special. With a little bit of luck I think we could have had two or three goals. As you could see at the end of the game both teams were really going for it because I don't think the replay was desired by either manager. We've got it and I'm full of confidence going up to Crewe now in ten days time. The big thing was to be in the hat and we've done exactly that."
Ainsworth singled out goalscorer Paris Cowan-Hall, saying, "I didn't mind a header in my day! If he can keep that up, I know he can finish with his feet and I'm sure he will get more chances with that. It's great for him. He's a great person to work with. His enthusiasm and willingness to work and learn off me is something special. Paris has got a good career ahead of him. We were worried that if he carried on he was going to strain his calf. With the big squad, there's no point not using it, and I thought Max Kretzschmar came on and did well for himself."
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