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Wycombe Wanderers 1
Saturday 24th April 2004
Football League Division Two
Mark Philo on the ball at Griffin Park Wanderers followers came away from Griffin Park on Saturday disappointed their side had not taken three points from this encounter with relegation threatened Brentford. In extremely hot conditions, the home side looked tense from the start and it was Wycombe who took the lead in the 54th minute when a move started from the back by Chris Vinnicombe culminated in Danny Senda's low ball in from the right channel being converted at the far post by Nathan Tyson. Brentford responded and equalised in fortunate fashion on 72 minutes when Matt Harrold's shot from six yards was deflected past Wayne Henderson in the Wanderers goal by Ian Simpemba. However, with most people expecting Brentford to push on for the winner it was Wycombe who finished by far the stronger side and should have won the game on 81 minutes when Tyson squared from the left only for Danny Senda to contrive to hit the post with his shot from six yards and Tyson then blasted the rebound over the bar. Mark Philo then went on a mazey run in the 90th minute from the left but sliced his chance wide with the goal at his mercy.
The flurry of action in the second-half had come after a fairly tame opening 45 minutes. Tyson dragged a shot wide from the left side of goal after just 3 minutes while Senda's run from midfield on 6 minutes saw his curling shot to top corner of the goal tipped over by Stuart Nelson in The Bees goal. At the other end The Wanderers defence shut out Brentford's attempts at goal, Jay Tabb going the closest on 15 minutes with a shot from 15 yards that was deflected wide for a corner accroding to referee Joslin. The clearest opening of the half come on 27 minutes when Tyson's shot from the right was punched down by Nelson but Philo couldn't convert the follow-up.
Half-time 0-0
Action at Griffin ParkPhilo was one of five changes from the side that had lost to Swindon the previous week. He replaced Jonny Dixon up front with Roger Johnson moving back to his preferred centre-back role in a Wanderers back four that included Chris Vinnicombe in place of the departed Mark Rogers. Matt Bloomfield and Steve Brown returned in midfield in favour of Dannie Bulman and Darren Currie, while in goal was Villa Reserve 'keeper Wayne Henderson who came in after Lee Worgan had been recalled by Wimbledon. The 20 year old keeper had an impressive Football League debut after becoming Wanderers fifth regular 'keeper this season.
Tyson's goal on 54 minutes was just reward for Wycombe's efforts and the ex-Reading player now becomes Wycombe's top scorer in the League in 2003/4 with 8 goals from 19 appearances. The same player could have doubled the lead on 68 minutes when a long clearance by Henderson wrong footed the home defence but the shot was off target. Brentford got their equaliser on 72 minutes but failed to build on their good luck. Senda should have scored on 82 minutes and Philo's run at goal in the dying moments was a joy to watch until the final execution saw the ball fly high of the target.
Final Score - Brentford 1 Wycombe 1
Speaking after the game Tony Adams said he was disappointed not to have taken three points from the game, adding "I had a new philosophy during the week in deciding to change the shape of the team and it paid off for us this afternoon. We should have taken all three points from our performance as we dominated the play for good periods of the game." Meanwhile, Bees boss Martin Allen said "Theyíre (Wycombe) a wounded animal, and often a wounded animal turns round and it bites you back. Itís a local derby, which makes it even worse. It was our biggest crowd for god knows how long, it was a fantastic atmosphere. Everybody to a man was expecting Brentford to beat them, but itís not always as easy."
Wycombe: Henderson, Simpemba, Nethercott, Johnson, Vinnicombe, Simpson, Bloomfield, Brown, Senda, Tyson, Philo - subs not used Currie, Bulman, Dixon, Mapes, Hole
Bookings: none
Scorer: Tyson (54)
Brentford: Nelson, Dobson (sub HT Harrold), Sonko, Fitzgerald, Bull, Hutchinson (sub 89 Somner), Talbot, Tabb, Hunt, May, O'Connor - subs not used: Julian, Kitamirike, Evans
Bookings: Hutchinson (foul 47), O'Connor (foul 75)
Scorer: og (72)
Referee: Phil Joslin Attendance: 7,145 (away 600 approx)
The game at Brentford was Wanderers 500th Football League game since promotion from the Conference in 1993. That milestone has been reached in a little under eleven seasons, the last ten of which have been spent in Division Two. 500 League games - special feature
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