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Wycombe Wanderers 0
West Ham United 1
Saturday 14th July 2018
Wanderers suffered defeat in their first pre-season friendly prior to the start of the 2018/19 campaign - going down 1-0 to a relatively strong West Ham United side at Adams Park. The only goal of the game came on 34 minutes when Austrian International Marko Arnautovic fired past new signing Ryan Allsop.
Wandereres fielded two different starting XI's for each half and included five triallists at different stages during the 90 minutes. Although unnamed on the team-sheet, the trialist central defender used in the first-half was QPR's Charlie Fox, along with former Charlton Athletic youth team left-back Archie Edwards. Released 21 year old Port Vale midfielder Chris Regis, also played the first 45 minutes. During the second-half central defender Ben Frempah was given a chance in a Wycombe shirt having previously played for Guiseley. The fifth and final trialist on show for Wanderers was striker Tomi Adeloye, formerly of Hartlepool.
Other team news for Wanderers saw midfielder Curtis Thompson also feature in the second-half having signed a short-term deal with Wanderers announced prior to kick-off. Goalkeeper Ryan Allsop made his first appearance back in a Wycombe since signing a permanent deal in the summer but Wanderers' other new pre-season signing, Darius Charles, was unavailable due to injury. Anthony Stewart was making his first Wanderers appearance of 2018 having been injured in the game at Coventry City in December 2017.
Meanwhile, The Premier League side included several familiar faces in their line-up. They included Ukrainian International Andriy Yarmolenko, making his Hammers debut having signed from Borussia Dortmund just four days previous.
Wanderers' best chances of the game from Scott Kashket who headed wide from Nathan Tyson's cross on 17 minutes, while a long range second-half from Paris Cowan-Hall was saved by Hammers 'keeper Adrián on 65 minutes and the Spanaird was there again seven minutes later to tip over a Stewart header and deny an equaliser for Gareth Ainsworth's side. Wycombe continue their pre-season programme with a home game with Brentford on Tuesday 17th July 2018.
Full-time - Wycombe 0 West Ham 1
Speaking after the game, Wanderers Manager Gareth Ainsworth told the press: "We got what we wanted which was to get minutes out of the boys, but on top of that I’m proud of my team for keeping a Premier League to just one goal. There was a lot of money out there on the pitch in the away team but we matched them for chances and could’ve nicked a draw. They’ve got a great manager and they’ll push on from here, but for me all the signs were encouraging.
"There are always signings in the pipeline but it’s a question of what we’ve got left to spend. I’m hoping for some loan deals at least, but the boys who’ve come in today have impressed me.
“If you go back a couple of years, both Nick Freeman and Luke O’Nien forging Wycombe careers through being on trial here is evidence enough for us to keep on searching in this way. Opinions can be changed, and just because someone has said ‘no’ to a player in the past isn’t solid proof that a career cannot be achieved elsewhere.
“We’re looking forward to Brentford on Tuesday and getting more minutes out of the boys. We have to take a ‘slowly, slowly’ approach because we can’t afford to pick up injuries, and I trust our medical staff and our players to make sure we’re firing on all cylinders for the league game against Blackpool on day one, because that’s what it’s all about.
“We’ve kept the majority of the squad together, we know what we are and how we play, and we know our strengths."
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