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Blackpool 3
Saturday 17th January 2004
Football League Division Two
Keeper Scott Bevan claims the ball on his Wanderers debut
The latest disaster of Wanderers season came as they were felled 3-0 at home to a mediocre Blackpool side who have now beaten Wycombe in six of the last seven meetings between the two sides. Wycombe enjoyed the vast majority of possession in the first-half but found themselves two-nil down at the break and never looked likely to recover. Wanderers are now nine points adrift of the safety zone and the drop to Division Three now looks ever more on the cards.
Tony Adams, the subject of resignations claims in the national press in the week leading up to the game, made six changes to the side that lost 2-0 at Stockport the previous Saturday. On loan Southampton 'keeper Scott Bevan made his debut in goal in place of Steve Williams, Danny Senda returned at right-back in place of Steven Taylor, while Keith Ryan and Stuart Roberts came into the midfield for Jermanine McSporran (suspended) and Michael Simpson (ill). Up front Nathan Tyson made a surprise return up front in place of Luke Moore - the Reading striker having recovered from his knee injury, while Craig Faulconbridge was favoured ahead of Andy Bell.
After a quiet opening, Wanderers fell behind in the 13th minute after blocks from both Scott Marshall and Stuart Nethercott had seemed to have averted the danger but the ball was played back into the far post from the Blackpool right and Danny Coid tucked the ball in ahead of Danny Senda's challenge.
Wanderers battled for an equaliser and when Tyson chased down a clearance on 23 minutes the ball rebounded back past Pool 'keeper Lee Jones and just wide of the target. Moments later Craig Faulconbridge came with inches of equalising when his header crashed against the right-hand upright following a Currie free-kick. However, three minutes later Pool broke down their left wing through Scott Taylor who cut inside before beating Bevan at the near post with a low shot. It was literally the visitors second serious effort at goal.
Wanderers pressed to get back into the game and on 29 minutes Darren Currie's corner from the right saw Stuart Nethercott's header at the far post pushed away by Jones in the Pool goal. Four minutes later the tireless Keith Ryan hooked an effort over from a central position 20 yards from goal but Wanderers trailed at the break.
Half-time Wycombe 0 Blackpool 2
Matt Bloomfield replaced Craig Faulconbridge after the break and the former Ipswich midfielder injected some creativity into the Wycombe midfield. Three minutes into the second-half Senda got away down the right wing and his cross from the bye-line saw Roberts head wide of the near post.
Just after the hour mark Tyson weaved in from the right side of midfield but his bobbling shot was easily dealt with by the 'keeper. But any small hope of a Wycombe comeback came to an end in the 67th minute when a free-kick from the left flank saw Ritchie Wellens' shot pushed onto the post by Bevan but Steve Davis was on hand to smash home the loose ball to make the score 3-0. To Wycombe's credit they kept going until the end but only a great save by Bevan on 76 minutes prevented the margin being any greater. Is there any way back from here?
Speaking in the press conference after the game Blackpool boss Steve McMahon, also in the news after he withdrew a resignation, commented "It was a fantastic performance given the circumstances of what's happened over the last few days. If anyone doubted the players' commitment to me or the club, then they shouldn't have because they were fantastic in this game. We played some great football, scored good goals and could have had more. We were hungry and determined and I couldn't ask for any more." Meanwhile Tony Adams was unhappy with conceeding sloppy goals but praised the effort of his side, saying "I think the lads gave me everything today, the effort was there and I couldn't knock them for that today. I told them I was 100% behind them because they gave me everything but unfortunately we are not good enough at the moment, one day we will be."
Final Score - Wycombe 0 Blackpool 3
Wycombe: Bevan, Senda, Simpemba, Nethercott, Marshall, Bulman, Ryan (sub 75 Bell), Currie, Roberts, Faulconbridge (sub HT Bloomfield), Tyson - subs not used: Mapes, Brown, Williams
Bookings: none
Blackpool: Jones, Grayson, Hilton, Davis, Elliott, Bullock (sub 86 Wiles), Wellens (sub 78 Burns), McMahon, Coid, Murphy, Taylor (sub 84 Sheron) - subs not used Barnes, Flynn
Bookings: none
Scorers: Coid (13), Taylor (27), Davis (67)
Referee: Grant Hegley Attendance: 4,834 (away end 467)
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