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Bristol City 1
Tuesday 24th August 2004
Carling Cup First Round
Adam Birchall - first start in a Wycombe shirt Wanderers slumped out of the Carling Cup, going down 1-0 to Bristol City in a largely uninspiring game at Adams Park. The only goal of the game came on 70 minutes when City youngster Leroy Lita headed home a Steven Gillespie cross from the right. City had travelled to Wycombe having lost on their three previous visits and after a poor start to the current campaign where they had yet to register a victory.
Tony Adams made two changes to the starting line-up that had lost 3-0 to Rochdale the previous Saturday. Mike Williamson was missing with a dead-leg picked up in training the day before the tie and Gus Uhlenbeek came in with Roger Johnson moving back to his favoured central defensive role. Elsewhere, on loan Arsenal reserve striker Adam Birchall got his first start in a Wycombe shirt with Keith Ryan sacrificed from midfield to accomodate the change.
Birchall struggled to make an impact during an opening 45 minutes that saw Wycombe have the better of the possession but fail to get that vital effort in on goal. One of the biggest cheers from a lowly home support was reserved for a penalty claim in the 21st minute after Danny Senda looked to have been impeded by Clayton Fortune but referee Paul Danson saw nothing wrong. At the other end City's best chances came through the lively Leroy Lita who went close with a header on 15 minutes and then tested Frank Talia eight minutes before the interval with an improvised overhead kick.
Half-time 0-0
19 year former City trainee Lita was the dangerman again after the break, his twisting and turning on the edge of the box on 58 minutes almost bringing the opening goal but Talia punched clear. Clayton Fortune's challenge denied Nathan Tyson just after the hour mark as Wycombe made a rare assault on goal. However, the deadlock was broke on 70 minutes when substitute Steven Gillespie beat a static Wycombe defence and his cross from the right was met by the head of Lita who placed the ball in the far corner of the net.
Lee Miller came close to extending the lead with ten minutes remaining with a header that Talia had to be alert to move to his left to save.
Wanderers finally came alive in the closing stages with Nathan Tyson going closest to an equaliser. His strike on 77 minutes whistled over the crossbar while moments later there was a better chance but the former Reading striker scuffed his shot. From that point on City managed to kill the game and go into the Second Round draw and leave Wanderers followers disappointed.
Final Score - Wycombe 0 Bristol City 1
Speaking in the press conference after the game Tony Adams was pleased with how his players had responded after Saturday's 3-0 home defeat to Rochdale, commenting "That was a very positive reaction, a fantastic performance and I'm very proud of the boys tonight. Unfortunately, we didn't get the result but it was 200% improvement from Saturday." The Wycombe boss described the defeat to Rochdale as "very boring, frustrating and a terrible game." but on the tie with City he enthused "We actually played football tonight. We got the ball down and played, we created chances. There was tremendous growth and learning there and we will grow from that performance."
Wycombe: Talia, Uhlenbeek, Silk, Johnson, Nethercott, Senda, Burnell, Easton, Tyson, Birchall, Stonebridge - subs not used: Ryan, Reilly, Ahmed, Martin, Williams
Bookings: Senda (foul 75)
Scorers: none
Bristol City: Phillips, Smith, Fortune, Hill, Woodman, Murray (sub 60 Gillespie), Doherty, Orr, Roberts (sub 81 Tinnion), Lita, Miller - subs not used: Heffernan, Anyinsah, Harley
Bookings: Hill (foul 71), Doherty (foul 75), Gillespie (foul 77)
Scorers: Lita (70)
Referee: Mr Paul Danson Attendance: 1,778 (320 away end)
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