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Match Report


Posted Sat 14 Aug 10 at 16:57 PM


Wanderers were held to a 0-0 draw by Stockport County on Saturday afternoon as both defences came out on top at Edgeley Park.

The visitors looked to be the better side in the opening 45 minutes but were unable to turn their possession into meaningful chances, and they were almost made to pay as County came out stronger after the break.

In the end Gary Waddock's men were grateful to keeper Nikki Bull for two fine saves to deny George Donnelly and Greg Tansey, whilst Jon-Paul Pittman stabbed the ball wide from close range at the other end.

Wycombe's next fixture comes at home to Oxford United next Saturday in the first derby showdown of the new campaign.

Gary Waddock recalled Ben Strevens, Gareth Ainsworth and Matt Bloomfield to the starting XI after they were rested for the midweek tie with Millwall, while there was a debut for Andy Sandell at left-back following his impressive display as a sub in midweek.

Following an evenly contested opening 10 minutes, Robbie Williams nearly entertained the home fans but his curling 25-yard free-kick deflected on to Nikki Bulls' left-hand post.

Gary Waddock's men responded well and a smart move including Ben Strevens and Kevin Betsy set up Lewis Montrose who, after surging onto the latter's pass, stung the palms of Owain Fon Williams from the edge of Stockport's 18-yard box.

Wycombe began to impose themselves with the front six linking up well but, in truth, the Chairboys struggled to create any clear chances until just before the break.

Rather than a wonderfully worked goal, which the Wanderers fans have come accustomed to under the reins of Waddock, it was a mistake from Fon Williams that nearly gifted the Blues the lead on 35 minutes when his clearance cannoned off Ben Strevens and over his own crossbar.

At the other end Danny Rowe volleyed a David Poole cross wide of Nikki Bull's goal before the Blues ended the half strongly with two half chances. Firstly Betsy glanced a Gareth Ainsworth cross just wide before he saw a shot deflected wide for a corner, although the last chance of the half came for the home side when David Poole shanked a volley over the top from 18 yards.

Having been outplayed for much of the opening period, Stockport emerged for the second half with a new-found confidence and almost took the lead inside the first six minutes. Wycombe's attack broke down and a direct clearance sent George Donnelly one-on-one with Nikki Bull, but the Blues' keeper made a fine save to keep the scores level.

The home side were beginning to impose themselves for the first time and it prompted Gary Waddock to introduce Matt Phillips and Jon-Paul Pittman from the subs' bench, with Matt Bloomfield and Scott Rendell making way.

And Pittman came close to breaking the deadlock just nine minutes after coming on when Ben Strevens' low cross caused mayhem in the Hatters' box and Pittman toe-poked the ball wide of the near post with Kevin Betsy and two home defenders in close attention.

The pattern of play favoured the Hatters and they were looking more and more lively, almost finding the net when David Poole volleyed over the top from Conlon's knockdown, while Nikki Bull comfortably gathered sub Jamie Proctor's low drive on 70 minutes.

Wycombe's defence were looking strong for the most part but they needed the help of their attack to relieve some of the pressure, and the two subs were helping to make a difference. Matt Phillips' cross was perfect for Gareth Ainsworth at the back post on 74 minutes and the veteran's downward header was on target but fumbled out to safety.

But still the home side came forward, and after Nikki Bull made a fine save to tip Greg Tansey's free-kick over the bar, Danny Pilkington curled an effort just wide from 25 yards as the clock ticked towards full-time.

It proved to be the last real chance of the game and despite a late rally from the Blues which caused panic in the Stockport defence, both sides have reason to be satisfied with a point each after a good day's work at Edgeley Park.

Wycombe: Bull, Foster, Sandell, Bennett, Johnson, Ainsworth, Bloomfield (Phillips 56), Montrose (Murtagh 83), Betsy, Rendell (Pittman 56), Strevens.

Subs: Arnold, McCoy, Westwood, McClure.

Bookings: Betsy

Stockport: Fon Williams, Lynch, Williams (Griffin 72), Swailes, Assoumani, Poole (Pilkington 76), Turnbull, Tansey, Rowe (Proctor 60), Conlon, Donnelly.

Subs: Vincent, Halls, Fisher, Ormson.


10mins: CHANCE - Robbie Williams' 25-yard free-kick deflects on to Nikki Bull's left-hand post.

12mins: CHANCE - Lewis Montrose stings the palms of Owain Fon Williams after being found by Kevin Betsy on the edge of the Hatters' 18-yard box.

15mins: CHANCE - Wonderful sliding block from Alan Bennett to deny David Poole's teasing cross finding a team-mate.

34mins: CHANCE - Ben Strevens charges down Fon Williams' clearance which cannons back over the keeper's crossbar.

35mins: CHANCE - Danny Rowe's volleys wide after meeting fellow winger's Poole's cross.

39mins: CHANCE - Kevin Betsy glances Gareth Ainsworth's cross from the right apex of the box just wide.

44mins: CHANCE - After being picked out by Scott Rendell, Betsy's fierce shot deflects wide as the Blues begin to turn the screw.

45mins: CHANCE - Poole shanks his effort high and wide over Bull's crossbar after the fall had fallen to him 20 yards out.

51mins: SAVE - George Donnelly races through on goal but is denied by a fine save from Nikki Bull.

56mins: SUBS - Jon-Paul Pittman and Matt Phillips replace Scott Rendell and Matt Bloomfield.

60mins: SUB - Stockport hand a debut to sub Jamie Proctor, as Danny Rowe comes off.

65mins: CHANCE - Pittman stabs wide from close range from a Ben Strevens cross.

68mins: CHANCE - David Poole latches on to Barry Conlon's superb flick-on and lifts his volley over the bar.

74mins: SAVE - Gareth Ainsworth's downhead header is fumbled by Fon Williams but Stockport hack it clear.

76mins: SUB - Danny Pilkington replaces David Poole.

82mins: SAVE - Nikki Bull pulls off a fine save to keep out Greg Tansey's swerving free-kick.

83mins: SUB - Lewis Montrose comes off, with Keiran Murtagh taking his place.

85mins: CHANCE - Danny Pilkington curls an effort just wide from 25 yards.

FT: Stockport County 0-0 Wycombe Wanderers

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