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Rochdale 3
Saturday 21st August 2004
Football League 'League Two'
Action Wanderers went down 3-0 to Rochdale at Adams Park with two of the goals conceded coming in second-half stoppage time. The game looked to be heading for a 0-0 scoreline before the visitors scored through an overhead kick from Grant Holt following a corner from the right on 70 minutes. With Wanderers pressing for an equaliser, it was a penalty on 90 minutes from Gary Jones after a foul by Gus Uhlenbeek that sealed victory for the visitors victory, while a Leighton McGivern strike on 93 minutes made their journey back north even more pleasant.
Tony Adams stuck with the same starting XI who had drew at Northampton the previous week. New loan signing Adam Birchall was included on the bench following his temporary to Wycombe on Friday from Arsenal. The 19 year old striker was introduced for his Football League debut at half-time, Tony Adams chosing to sacrifice Joe Burnell in midfield to accomodate his most recent signing.
By the half-time stage Wycombe had created the better chances of the two sides. Nathan Tyson's low cross from the left on 16 minutes saw Clint Easton nick the ball past the far post, while on 27 minutes Stuart Nethercott's free-kick from midfield was centred from the left by Roger Johnson and Danny Senda connected to send the ball into the side netting. Six minutes later Ian Stonebridge curled an effort wide of the right-hand upright after Easton had picked out the former Plymouth man from the right flank.
However, Wanderers' chances were tempered by Rochdale's exposure of Wanderers defensive shortcomings. Nottingham Forest loanee Brian Cash stabbed the ball past Frank Talia's left hand post after 18 minutes while on 29 minutes Holt crossed from the left byeline and it was left to Burnell to clear the danger.
Half-time 0-0
Wanderers change of formation for the second-half seem had no positive effect on turning chances into goals and it was the visitors who gradually took more control of the match. Holt was denied again by Talia on 58 minutes but the same player was on target in the 70th minute when he directed an overhead kick into the corner of the net.
Youngster Russell Martin was introduced for Easton in an attempt to give Wycombe some more bite in midfield and for a breif spell Wanderers looked like they might force an equaliser. Stonebridge went close on 79 minutes when a powerful volley was saved and Tyson struck the loose ball into the side netting. With four minutes remaining Senda's floated free-kick from the right came off the shoulder of Dale defender Greg Heald and clipped the top of the crossbar. It turned out to be Wanderers last effort at grabbing a point from the game and after pushing even more people forward it was the visitors who added two more goals to put a unreflective margin to the scoreline.
Final Score - Wycombe 0 Rochdale 3
Speaking after the game Tony Adams thought the game was "boring." and that "We tried different things just to break up the monotony" He added to BBC Three Counties Radio "I'm worried about the size of my squad, I'm worried about fitness levels, I'm worried that we got beaten up a little bit today. And I'm worried about when we had the ball we didn't create. So there's a lot to take stock of and that's going to be very interesting to see how they react to this."
Meanwhile Rochdale manager Steve Parkin said in the Press conference "I think Tony (Adams) was gracious in his defeat. He said we throughly deserved our win which I believe it was and he shouldn't be too dismayed. Wycombe have had a great start to the season. I thought his players worked and gave their all but they came up against a very good side today and it's a side that are starting to believe in themselves. Once you get that type of belief and determination you become very difficult to play against."
Wycombe: Talia, Silk, Johnson, Nethercott, Williamson, Senda, Burnell (sub HT Birchall), Ryan (sub 61 Uhlenbeek), Easton (sub 78 Martin), Stonebridge, Tyson - subs not used: Dixon, Williams
Bookings: none
Scorers: none
Rochdale: Edwards, Evans, Heald, Burgess, Gallimore, Cash, Jones, Clarke, Probets (sub 89 McCourt), Tait (sub 83 McGivern), Holt - subs not used Gilks, Goodall, Gibbins
Bookings: Cash (45 ungentlemanly conduct), Tait (59 time wasting), McGivern (95 ungentlemanly conduct)
Scorers: Holt (70), Jones (92 pen), McGivern (94)
Referee: Mr K Stroud Attendance: 4,440 (253 away end)
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