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Wycombe Wanderers - click here for your Rough Guide to The Chairboys Wycombe Wanderers 1 Colchester United - click here for Quick Guide to Col U
Colchester United 1
Saturday 5th May 2001
Nationwide Football League Division Two
Keith Ryan - headed goal earnt point against Col U - picture Paul DennisA 70th minute goal from Keith Ryan grabbed a point for Wycombe in the final game of the season against old rivals Colchester. 'Rhino' rose at the far post to head home Chris Vinnicombe's free-kick from the right flank. The goal came as a relief after Scott McGleish's goal 18 minutes earlier had threatened to send the Essex mob home with all three points.
However, Ryan's goal sparked a late rally by Wycombe and Roy Essandoh almost scored on the break in the 85th minute before Ross Johnson challenged. Seconds earlier The U's were claiming handball against Ryan but referee Barry Knight wasn't interested. Then deep into stoppage time Jamie Bates thundered in a free-kick that Andy Woodman did well to turn around his right-hand post.
Lawrie Sanchez was forced to make changes against The U's. Jason Cousins was ruled out of the game against after picking up a groin strain on the hour mark against Bristol Rovers on Wednesday. Martyn Lee also missed the game after he finished the game at Bristol with an injury to his left leg. Meanwhile Paul McCarthy was rested to avoid reaching 15 yellow cards and earning a three match ban at start of next season. However, Steve Brown was available again after his three match ban and there were starts for Roy Essandoh and Keith Ryan as Sanchez reshuffled his pack. 'Rhino' played in the centre of defence but pushed forward more the second half after Wycombe had struggled to create chances in a disappointing first-half.
Wycombe began the game bright enough with Danny Senda quickly finding space down the left and delivering a cross that was headed wide by Essandoh. Wycombe then forced two quick corners but it was the visitors who had the better of the remainder of the half. On 9 minutes Gavin Johnson drove an effort wide from the left side of the Wycombe penalty area and a minute later former Wanderer Steve McGavin's long range effort almost caught out Player of the Season Martin Taylor. The best chance of the half came after McGavin had turned the ball in from the right bye-line but McGleish made a mess of his shot and the ball ended wide of Taylor's right-hand post.
Half-time 0-0

The U's introduced 16 year old Dean Morgan after the interval and it was the youngster who had a hand in the goal that gave the visitors the lead in the 52nd minute. It came after McGavin sent over a free-kick from the left corner of the Wycombe penalty area. Essandoh cleared but Morgan nodded the ball back in and McGleish headed past Taylor as the static Wycombe defence looked in vain for the offside flag.
Ryan made his first venture forward on the hour mark, creating space on the left before firing in a low shot that needed to be saved by Woodman in the U's goal. George Clegg replaced Steve Brown on 68 minutes shortly after 'Brownie' had picked up his umpteen booking of the season. It signaled a closing spell by Wycombe that could have won the game. The equalising goal came when Vinnicombe's free-kick from the right just eluded the head of Essandoh but the tenacious Ryan nipped in head past Woodman.
Five minutes later a trip on Guy Whittingham right on the edge of the U's penalty area had Wycombe screaming for a penalty but a free-kick was awarded that Vinnicombe saw deflected over for a corner.
The U's then had a golden opportunity to claim victory after McGleish's 78th minute cross from the left found an unmarked Chris Keeble just 15 yards from goal but The U's midfielder fell over without a Wycombe player nearby and injured himself in the process.
With five minutes remaining The U's had a strong claim for a penalty waved away when Ryan played a bit of basketball in the Wycombe penalty area. Referee Barry Knight waved play on and Wycombe broke down the right side where Essandoh was just about to pull the trigger before a last second challenge by Ross Johnson.
An injury to Clegg meant that Mo Harkin was given the chance of his final few seconds in a Wycombe shirt and he nearly saw 'Blaster Bates' grab a dramatic winner with a 30 yard free-kick.
The draw against Colchester means that Wycombe finish in 13th place in the Division Two table having completed the season with one defeat in eight and three victories on the road.
Final Score Wycombe 1 Colchester 1
Wycombe: Taylor, Marsh, Vinnicombe, Bates, Brown (sub 68 Clegg [sub 90 Harkin]), Bulman, Simpson, Ryan, Senda, Whittingham, Essandoh
subs not used: Brady, Townsend, Castledine
Yellow Card: Brown (foul 66)
Colchester: Woodman, White, Clark, Dunne, R Johnson, Stockwell (sub HT Morgan), McGleish, Pinault, G Johnson, Keeble (sub 80 Keith), McGavin (sub 84 Duguid)
subs not used: Brown, Conlon
Yellow Card: White (foul 53)
Referee: B Knight Attendance: 7,516 (719 Colchester)
Chairboys Stat File
5th May 2001

Division Two
Played 46
Won 15
Drew 14
Lost 17
Goals For 46
Goals Against 53
Position 13th

Top Scorers (League)
Andy Rammell 10
Steve Brown
Dannie Bulman 4
Keith Ryan 4
Andy Baird 3
Jamie Bates 3
Martyn Lee 3
Michael Simpson 3
Jermaine McSporran 2
Paul McCarthy 2
Dave Carroll 2
Danny Senda 2
Sam Parkin 1
Mark Rogers 1
Chris Vinnicombe 1
Guy Whittingham 1
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