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It was always going to be interesting to see how Wycombe responded to the midweek 8-3 reverse at home to Aston Villa in the Carling Cup. Manager John Gorman made two changes to the starting line-up that had faced Villa - Betsy returning after injury in favour of Jonny Dixon on the right of midfield and Rob Lee also coming into midfield to replace back injury victim Joe Burnell.
Betsy was on the scoresheet within the opening 60 seconds after Nathan Tyson pulled the ball back from the left bye-line to Tommy Mooney who curled in a cross to the far post. Betsy intially headed the cross goalwards before getting a second bite and turning and knocking the ball into the opposite corner of the net. Mooney twice went close to extending Wycombe's lead before on 15 minutes Matt Bloomfield's through ball found Betsy in the right channel who beat two defenders before angling home a low shot for 2-0.
The home side an appeal for a penalty waved away on 25 minutes after Frank Talia had rushed out to take the ball from the feet of Barker. At the other end Stefan Oakes fired over from 30 yards while former Wanderers loanee Adam Birchall had the home side's first serious effort at goal on 42 minutes when he curled in a shot from the left of centre that Talia dived to save with ease.
From the next attack Wycombe were 3-0 ahead and the game seemingly in the bag. It was Bloomfield who was the provider again as he won the ball in midfield before sliding a pass through to Betsy who again finished with a low shot that went in off the far left-hand post.
The home fans booed their side off at the break and in a desperate move Caretaker boss Peter Shirtliff brought on two substitutes and switched to a more attacking formation. Despite the changes the initial pattern of play was similar to the first half and if Tyson's shot on 52 minutes hadn't been blocked by Stags 'keeper Kevin Pressman, the result would have been well and truly wrapped up before the hour mark. As it turned out The Stags countered from a 65th minute Wycombe attack where Gavin Peers had headed against his own cross bar. A rash challenge by Senda on Brown brought a yellow card and a penalty for the home side with Barker sending Talia the wrong way from the spot to make the score 3-1.
Panic then seemed to set in the Wycombe defence and midfield. A swift passing move from the home side on 75 minutes saw Giles Coke fire in a fierce drive that Talia could only push into the path of Brown who slid the ball home from close range. The final 15 minutes was literally all Mansfield as the travelling contingent from Wycombe watched on in disbelief. Talia saved a curling shot from Gareth Jelleyman on 77 minutes and after Dixon had replaced Tyson who limped off with a knee injury, Rhys Day saw a header skim off the post in 86th minute and substitute Adam Rundle skewed a shot wide in the dying moments as the home side came close to salvaging what had looked impossible less than 30 minutes previous. But Wycombe hung on for their second away League victory of the season.
Final Score - Mansfield Town 2 Wycombe 3
Speaking to BBC Three Counties Radio after the game, John Gorman said "It seems crazy that we are talking now as if we are disappointed to have won 3-2 away from home but it was just the manner in which it happened today." The Wycombe boss commented on the second-half display by Mansfield, saying "When they have nothing to lose you just have a go in the second-half and sometimes you just get a break. They got the break from the penalty. It was a penalty, you couldn't argue but we should have maybe scored to make it 4-0." Gorman continued "In the end we are just delighted to get three points. You know how horrible this game can be but imagine if we'd lost that one or drawn that one today?"
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