An injury time Michael Harriman goal stunned League 1 Millwall to send Wycombe into the third round of the Emirates FA Cup.An injury time Michael Harriman goal stunned League 1 Millwall to send Wycombe into the third round of the Emirates FA Cup.
Paul Hayes’ opener was cancelled out by a stunning Ben Thompson strike, before Harriman’s 94th minute winner secured a famous 2-1 victory and booked the Chairboys’ place in the next round and a chance to play Premier League opposition.
Gareth Ainsworth made two changes to the side that lost at Bristol Rovers on Tuesday, with Aaron Pierre returning from suspension to replace Danny Rowe in defence, and Aaron Amadi-Holloway called in to lead the line in place of Garry Thompson.
The first chance of the game arrived after 30 seconds, as a scuffed clearance by Pierre fell at the feet of Lions striker Lee Gregory but his strike from 18 yards sailed well over the bar.
Gregory then tested Matt Ingram in the Blues’ goal on 17, as he looped a backwards header towards the far corner which Ingram clawed away, and Hayes had Wycombe’s first effort on goal from 20 yards, firing a half volley wide.
Both sides struggled to get a foothold in the game as they battled blustery conditions at The Den, but it was Wycombe who started to play the ball on the floor and created the best openings of a scrappy first half.
A midfield break by Matt Bloomfield after neat play by skipper Hayes on 22 minutes saw him bearing down on former Chairboys loanee Jordan Archer’s goal, but his effort was well blocked by a covering defender and Harriman fired the follow up effort well wide.
The Blues looked the more likely side to break the deadlock and on 32 forced Archer into a save as he dived to his right to keep out Luke O’Nien’s low strike from Harriman’s knock down.
But the best chance of the half fell at the feet of Amadi-Holloway on 42 following a fine move started by Bloomfield. His cross-field pass found Harriman on the right wing, who brought it inside the full back for a low left-footed cross which carved open the defence and ran into the path of Amadi-Holloway at the back post, but he guided his effort narrowly wide of the far post from six yards.
Two quick fire efforts from Shaun Williams and Aiden O’Brien forced Ingram into good saves at the start of the second half, but the Blues continued where they left off in the first period and found the breakthrough their play deserved on 50.
Bloomfield turned on the ball 30 yards out from the Millwall goal and lofted a superb ball over the defence to find Hayes in acres of space. The Chairboys’ skipper latched onto it and calmly slotted the ball past the stranded Archer, much to the delight of the fantastic travelling support.
But the goal seemed to invigorate the hosts and the League 1 side were back on level terms on 57.
A cross from the left was cleared by Sido Jombati, but only as far as Lions midfielder Thompson, who struck a sweet strike from 25 yards which fizzed past Ingram and into the bottom right corner.
The game felt more like a cup tie with both sides intent on attack, and the Wanderers thought they had retaken the lead after another free-flowing move on 65. Amadi-Holloway turned his man in the middle of the park and freed Sam Wood on the left flank, who drilled the ball across the face of the goal to find Harriman arriving, only for his effort to be ruled out for offside.
Both teams cancelled each other out as legs tired in the last third of the match. Neat play from the industrious Bloomfield saw him twist and turn on the edge of the box before curling an effort over on 84, but as the possibility of a replay loomed, it was Wycombe who had the final say.
A free kick sent deep into the Millwall box found Aaron Pierre and following some fantastic footwork, the centre half beat his man and squared the ball across the six yard box where Harriman was waiting for a simple tap-in to send the visiting supporters into euphoria.
The defence stood firm for the final few minutes and the full time whistle was greeted with jubilation by players and fans alike. The Blues can now look forward to Monday’s third round draw and a potential money-spinning tie.
Line-up: Ingram, McCarthy, Stewart, Pierre, Jombati, Harriman, Bloomfield, O’Nien, Wood, Hayes, Amadi-Holloway (Thompson, 76)
Subs: Lynch, McGinn, Sellers, Kretzschmar, Rowe, Ugwu
Att: 3,960. Away: 658