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Report: Northampton 3-1 Blues

17 November 2012

Poor finishing cost the Wanderers dear as they lost 3-1 at Northampton Town.

Adebayo Akinfenwa scored twice for the hosts, including one from the spot and former Chairboy Chris Hackett was also on target as the Cobblers went 3-0 ahead. 

Joel Grant reduced the deficit with a penalty of their own, but Wycombe were made to rue missed chances as both Charles Dunne and Dean Morgan hit the woodwork and other promising opportunities were spurned.

Gareth Ainsworth made the one change to the side that started against Rochdale with fit-again Danny Foster in for Bruno Andrade. Sam Wood reverted back to a more familiar left-wing role.

Northampton’s Ishmel Demontagnac had the first shot of the game, but his volley from former Wanderer Ben Harding’s corner flew harmlessly over the bar. Jake Robinson then mis-hit an effort well wide from the edge of the area.

The Wanderers grew into the contest and should have taken the lead in the 18th minute. Dean Morgan kept a move alive and flighted a cross towards the back post which Leon Johnson headed across goal for Charles Dunne to take a touch and shoot goalwards, but the strike came back off the post. It was by far the clearest chance of the opening quarter of the game and one that the Chairboys should have taken.

The lively Morgan then did well to hold the ball up and found Dunne, who curled narrowly over from 20 yards.

Northampton took full advantage of their reprieve and took the lead in the 23rd minute. Hackett did well to get a cross in from the right and Akinfenwa jumped higher than Foster and Dave Winfield to head in at the far post.

All of the Chairboys’ chances were falling to Dunne, but he could only head Morgan’s inswinging free-kick into the side-netting at the second attempt.

Akinfenwa was causing all sorts of problems and he came close to a second just past the half-hour mark, heading Ben Tozer’s long throw just wide.

Stuart Lewis was flagged just offside as he looked to latch on to Morgan’s slide-rule pass after the forward had linked up well with Dennis Oli as Wycombe ended the first half well.

The Wanderers started the second half as they had finished the first and enjoyed a prolonged spell of pressure before hitting the woodwork for a second time in 57th minute. Lewis expertly headed the ball into Morgan’s path and his left-footed volley hit the right-hand post.

Once again the Chairboys’ profligacy in front of goal was punished within minutes as they doubled their advantage on the hour mark.

Winfield was adjudged to have fouled substitute Clive Platt and Akinfenwa sent Archer the wrong way from the spot.

It was 3-0 five minutes later as Northampton took advantage of Wycombe pushing forward. Akinfenwa played a clever pass out to Hackett on halfway and the winger drove forward before dispatching a powerful effort past Archer from 15 yards.

Wanderers reduced the deficit with 19 minutes remaining when Danny East needlessly fouled Morgan on the edge of the area and Grant coolly dispatched into the left-hand corner.

Substitute Bruno Andrade then curled a superb 25-yard effort inches wide of the left post as the Blues pushed forward.

Akinfenwa crashed a header against the bar from another long throw before forcing Archer into a save low to his left.

Grant looked the likeliest to get the Blues back into the contest, but he was just muscled off the ball after a mazy run.

Morgan had a low effort saved with seven minutes remaining, before Dunne went through on goal, but was denied by Nicholls who closed the angle well.

Substitute Matt McClure should have set up a grandstand finish in injury-time, but he headed Grant’s pin-point cross wide.

Wycombe: Archer, Foster, Dunne, Winfield (c), Johnson, Grant, Lewis, Scowen, Wood (Andrade 65), Morgan, Oli (McClure 69).

Subs: Harrison, Ainsworth, Kewley-Graham, Morias, Taylor.

Northampton: Nicholls, East, Tozer, Langmead, Widdowson, Hornby, Harding, Robinson (Charles 89, Hackett, Demontagnac (Platt 57), Akinfenwa (Moyo 77).

Subs: Higgs, Charles, Wilson, Mukendi, Platt, Toney

Attendance: 4,764 (471 Wycombe)

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