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Brighton and Hove Albion 1
Saturday 7th February 2004
Football League Division Two
Nathan Tyson goes close against Brighton Wanderers but in a fighting display against Brighton at Adams Park but couldn't quite pull off the victory that was so desparately needed. Wanderers came from a goal down to draw 1-1 but were left rueing a couple of golden opportunaties to have won the game in the second-half, including the miss of the season from Michael Simpson when he headed over from six yards. It was the third consecutive draw for Wycombe and a result that keeps the gap to safety a daunting nine points with sixteen games remaining.
Team news for Wycombe saw the previous week's goalscoring hero Ian Simpemba ruled out. Simpemba was concussed in the process of scoring at Hillsborough and was rested from training all week following medical advice. Steve Brown was Simpemba's replacement in midfield in the only change to the line-up that started against Sheffield Wednesday.
In a fairly uneventful first-half it was the visitors who took the lead on 33 minutes when a corner from the right by Paul Watson was headed back into the Wycombe six yard box by Gary Hart and Trevor Benjamin managed to back heel the ball past Scott Bevan from what had looked like an offside position when the ball had been played. However, Wanderers got back into the game at just the right time. It was in the second minute of first-half stoppage time when Jermaine McSporran's through ball down the right channel saw Nathan Tyson beat the offside trap and go and to slot the ball past former Wycombe loanee 'keeper Ben Roberts when a curling low left footed shot.
Half-time Wycombe 1 Brighton 1
Tyson's goal provided a lift for Wycombe as they took the game more to the visitors during the second period. Tyson went close within a couple of minutes of the restart and on 52 minutes it was the on loan Reading striker who was tripped as he raced down the left by Danny Cullip. Currie fired the resulting free-kick into the arms of Brighton substitute 'keeper Stuart Jones who had replaced Roberts at the break following an injury sustained through a challenge with McSporran in the 28th minute.
Scott Marshall in action versus BrightonDanny Senda made an important tackle to cut out Leon Knight on 57 minutes before Wycombe turned up the heat again on the Brighton goal. On 64 minutes McSporran's shot from the right side of the box seemed to blocked by a Brighton arm but as play continued it was Darren Currie's low cross from the right that saw Tyson come within a fraction of connecting to at the far post. However, the best chance came in the 74th minute when Currie floated a ball over from the left which picked out Simpson unmarked and with virtually an open goal in front of him. It looked a certain goal but to the disbelief of just about everybody in the ground his placed header missed the target and the ball skimmed away off the wrong side of the crossbar.
At the other end Brighton were kept at bay by a Wanderers defence that generally looked sound. There was even time for Scott Marshall to push forward in the closing stages and he was desperately unlucky not to have grabbed the winner when his header was deflected onto the crossbar.
Final Score - Wycombe 1 Brighton 1
Wanderers' Manager Tony Adams raced off moments before the end of the match after hearing that his girlfiend had gone into labour. Fitness Coach Peter Cawley fielded the press conference conference and commented "We're fighting for points at the moment and we've gone from defeats where we were conceding a goal and then capitulating to a situation now where we're getting back into the game. I think, realistically, today everyone would agree we should have won the game and we're really unfortunate not to be sitting here with three points."
Wycombe: Bevan, Senda, Reilly, Marshall, Nethercott, Currie, Simpson, Bulman, Brown, McSporran, Tyson - subs not used: Williams, Bloomfield, Roberts, Johnson, Philo
Bookings: none
Scorers: Tyson (45+2)
Brighton: Roberts (sub HT Jones), Virgo, Mayo, Cullip, Butters, Carpenter, Oatway, Watson, Hart (sub 83 Robinson), Knight, Benjamin (sub 83 McPhee) - subs not used Hammond, El-Abd
Bookings: Mayo (foul 45), Cullip (foul 90)
Scorers: Benjamin (33)
Referee: Alan Kaye Attendance: 6,657 (away end 1,627)
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