Wanderers hit another low with this 2-1 home defeat to Colchester United and finishing the game with just nine players after Stuart Roberts and Roger Johnson were red-carded in the dying moments.
Wycombe Wanderers 1
Colchester United 2
Tuesday 16th September 2003
Football League Division Two
Wanderers, fielding an unchanged starting line-up to the one that drew at QPR the previous Saturday, were second best to Colchester for the majority of the evening and saw the visitors take the lead in the 26th minute when former Chesham United player Wayne Andrews beat Frank Talia at the near post after cutting in from the right. A minute later Wanderers were two-nil down when United broke down the left and Rowan Vines finished brilliantly with a dipping 20 yard shot over Talia.
With Richard Harris and Iffy Onuora provided little threat up front it was no surprise that Lawrie Sanchez, in charge of his 250th competitive game at Wycombe, made changes at the break. Both Gavin Holligan and Keith Ryan were introduced as replacements up front and within five minutes Wanderers had pulled a goal back. It was the speed of Holligan coming in from the right that forced Andy Myers to trip the Wycombe player and Darren Currie did the honours from the penalty spot. Five minutes later Myers saw red for his second bookable offence and it should have prompted a Wycombe onslaught on the United goal. Instead Wycombe continued to struggle for ideas and it was literally only a two or three minute spell where Holligan (twice) and Chris Vinnicombe went close to salvaging a point.
To make matters worse Wycombe contrived to get two players sent off in stoppage time. First Stuart Roberts, who had only been on the pitch three minutes, lunged in at Kem Izzett and was perhaps unfortunate to see a straight red. Then Roger Johnson was pulled up for a foul on Izzet and received his second yellow card of the evening, the first having been issued for dissent after the first half whistle.
It was certainly a evening to forget for Wycombe followers as they saw defeat on home soil to United for the first time in ten years. It was also the nature of the defeat that hit home the hardest. Wanderers never took advantange of the extra man and too many times passes went astray or Wycombe were second to a loose ball. wanderers best spell came on 82 minutes when Holligan saw a far post header following a McSporran cross from the right saved by Simon Brown in the United goal. Vinnicombe then let fly from 20 yards but again Brown got a hand to the ball. Wanderers purple patch concluded when Holligan's curling effort from the right was pushed away and Currie summed up the evening of despair by skying the loose ball into the Valley End terrace.
After the game Lawrie Sanchez chose to steer clear of the press again but assistant Terry Gibson had a few harsh words to say about the team. Speaking in the press conference, he said "The problems for us are mounting up. It was not the best of results against our rivals Colchester, we started the game in a similar vein to the Sheffield Wednesday match with terrible defending and it's now time for hard words and hard action. People who have been given their chance this year haven't done the job so I'm pretty sure it's time to ring the chances and bring in someone who might do it. Even if it means they are young and inexperienced, so be it. It isn't fair on those who aren't in the team. We started the season full of optimism and are not a million miles away from getting results but we are a million miles away from being the team we want to be."
Final Score - Wycombe 1 Colchester 2
|Wycombe: Talia, Senda, Johnson, Rogers (sub 87 Roberts), Vinnicombe, McSporran, Bulman, Simpson, Currie, Onuora (sub HT Ryan), Harris (sub HT Holligan)- subs not used: Cook, Williams
Bookings: Johnson (dissent 45) Red Cards: Roberts (dangerous play 90), Johnson (foul, second yellow 92)
|Colchester: Brown, Stockley, Myers, Fitzgerald, Chilvers, Izzet, Pinault (sub 83 Bowry), Duguid, Vine, McGleish, Andrews (sub 66 Fagan) - subs not used Gerken, Keith, Baldwin
Bookings: Myers (foul 43) Red Card: Myers (foul, second yellow 55)
|Referee: Mr M Ryan
|Attendance: 4,401 (309 away end)
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