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Match Report


Posted Tue 11 Jan 11 at 21:40 PM


Wycombe's first FA Cup third round tie in nine years ended in defeat as Hereford United booked a fourth round date with Sheffield Wednesday thanks to a 1-0 victory at Adams Park.

After a nervy opening, the Blues improved and created a series of openings before the half-hour mark, with Kevin Betsy in particular missing a great chance from eight yards out.

And they were made to pay when Mathieu Manset pounced on Richard Rose's knockback from a left-wing cross to put the Bulls ahead on 32 minutes.

A stubborn United rearguard display, coupled with some wasteful attacking play from the Wanderers, ensured the visitors' passage to round four was safe, leaving the Blues to focus solely on matters at the top end of npower League 2.

Gary Waddock responded to the weekend defeat at Crewe by making four changes, handing a first start to Scott Donnelly while Marvin McCoy, Alan Bennett and Matt Bloomfield all came into the side.

It prompted a change in the Wanderers' formation, giving Gareth Ainsworth licence to roam further forward in an advanced right-wing position, but there were early scares at the other end when Stuart Fleetwood twice raced through only to be denied by backtracking defenders, while Nicky Featherstone also put a header wide of the far post.

The addition of an extra creative playing in the home side's midfield took its time to have a positive effect on the Blues but they gradually began to dominate, with Matt Bloomfield creating chances for Kevin Betsy and then Alan Bennett in close succession. Betsy's low strike was kept out by keeper Adam Bartlett before Bennett headed wide from an excellent position following Bloomfield's cross.

Wycombe's movement was causing all sorts of problems and they should have taken the lead on 26 minutes courtesy of a flurry of openings. Firstly Bloomfield dispossessed Richard Rose down the left but couldn't quite pick out Betsy in the area, before Scott Donnelly sent a piledriver towards goal which cannoned into Betsy's path and the winger could only lift his effort over the bar.

With the pressure mounting, the Wanderers went even closer when Gareth Ainsworth flicked Andy Sandell's free-kick onto the crossbar, and the missed chances proved costly when in-form Bulls striker Mathieu Manset opened the scoring with his first chance of the game.

A corner from the left was worked short and James McQuilkin nodded the ball back across goal, leaving the Frenchman with the simple chance of poking it home in front of the visiting supporters.

The goal was a sucker punch for the Blues and generated a lull in proceedings, with neither side coming close to adding to the scoresheet before the break.

And the opening to the second period failed to spark into life until just before the hour-mark, when Nikki Bull made a fine fingertip save to divert Joe Colbeck's low effort around the post before Alan Bennett headed wide at the other end.

Despite an upturn in tempo from the home side, clear-cut chances were hard to come by and Gary Waddock reacted by bringing on Scott Rendell and Ben Strevens with Gareth Ainsworth and Scott Donnelly the unlucky duo to depart.

Matt McClure was also introduced to the action in place of Kevin Betsy as the Blues desperately fought to stay in the competition, but their usual neat attacking play was being broken up too easily by a sea of orange shirts who seemed content to settle for their one-goal lead and use their pace up-front for rare counter attacks.

There was a late effort in anger from Stuart Lewis, who stung the palms of keeper Bartlett with just three minutes remaining, and a snapshot from Scott Rendell flew just past the post to ensure it is the visitors who head into the next stage.


5mins: CHANCE - Nicky Featherstone heads wide from a right-wing cross.

8mins: CHANCE - Stuart Fleetwood darts into the box but loses out to a smart tackle by Alan Bennett.

11mins: YELLOW - Joe Heath goes into the book for blocking Gareth Ainsworth's run.

15mins: SAVE - Nikki Bull tips a deflected Mathieu Manset effort over the top.

18mins: CHANCE - Stuart Beavon fires wide from the edge of the box.

19mins: SAVE - Adam Bartlett keeps out Kevin Betsy's fierce strike.

20mins: CHANCE - Alan Bennett heads wide from Matt Bloomfield.

26mins: CHANCE - Betsy fluffs his chance six yards out after Scott Donnelly's shot cannons into his path.

28mins: YELLOW - James McQuilkin sees yellow for a foul.

29mins: CHANCE - Gareth Ainsworth's flick header hits the bar.

32mins: GOAL - Mathieu Manset taps home from Richard Rose's header across goal.

57mins: SAVE - Nikki Bull keeps out Joe Colbeck's low shot.

60mins: CHANCE - Alan Bennett heads wide from a corner.

63mins: CHANCE - Stuart Lewis hits a swerving effort just over the bar from distance.

64mins: SAVE - Adam Bartlett holds Matt Bloomfield's low drive.

65mins: SUBS - Ben Strevens and Scott Rendell replace Scott Donnelly and Gareth Ainsworth.

67mins: YELLOW - Kevin Betsy makes it four in the book for a foul.

68mins: CHANCE - Joe Heath's free-kick goes miles high and wide.

73mins: SUB - Matt McClure gets his chance to shine, taking Kevin Betsy's place.

78mins: SUB - Rob Purdie comes on for Joe Heath.

83mins: SUB - Sean Canham replaces goalscorer Mathieu Manset.

93mins: CHANCE - Scott Rendell's smashed shot goes agonisingly wide.

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