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Interviews

Gareth: We never know when we are beat

Blues boss discusses Crewe win, his squad and the late Cyrille Regis.

23 January 2018

Gareth Ainsworth praised the resilience and strength in depth his squad possess as they registered their third consecutive league victory with a dramatic 3-2 triumph at Crewe.

After substitute Harry McKirdy looked to have snatched the hosts a draw with two minutes of normal time remaining, Craig Mackail-Smith stepped up to grab an injury time winner in yet another 3-2 topsy-turvy three points against the Alex.

Wanderers unleashed the attacking prowess of Mackail-Smith, Nathan Tyson and Scott Kashket with the scores locked at 1-1, and having the ability to change the game with that kind of firepower from his bench played a big part in taking maximum points, Ainsworth believes.

“My boys never know when they are beat,” he said.

“We deserved something out of the game, and the firepower I have got to bring off the bench changed things and I am really pleased to have won.

“It’s great to have that strength in depth in the squad and I thank the board, the fans and the 500 club for backing me as it times like this when you need those players.

“Tyson came on and was yet another thorn in the side of Crewe, and Craig Mackail-Smith came on and did what he does best.

“I’m really pleased to see Scott Kashket get some minutes as well, though people have got be patient with me with him as I know they were singing his name trying to get him on, but we have a plan for him and he is going to be big part in the push, as will the likes of El-Abd, Stewart and Harriman amongst others who are all working their way back.

The late win at Gresty Road sparked memorable scenes on the pitch but also in the stands and the Blues boss felt it was the perfect reward for the Chairboys faithful who did not stop singing all afternoon.

“It’s been a long time since we had won at Crewe in the league and the fans deserved that win.

“They get right behind the boys and those scenes at the end there when they were running down to celebrate with the players is what football is all about, and that is what you support your local team for.

“The Premier League and the Championship are pulling away from League One and Two are a rate of knots money wise, but certainly not in terms of passion as you only have to look at our fans at the end of the game to see the game is still alive and well in League Two.

“They follow their team up and down the country and give everything they’ve got for feelings like that and you just can’t put a price on that.”

The game at the Alexandra Stadium was the first Wanderers fixture since the sad passing of former player Cyrille Regis.

Before last weekend, Wanderers last victory at the home of the Railwaymen came back in September 1994 in a 2-1 victory, with Regis bagging the first the Chairboys two goals.

Ainsworth, who said he and his players had the striker in their minds before entering the pitch, felt the win was the perfect tribute to one of the game’s true greats.

“Just before the game I mentioned Cyrille Regis, who has a great, great man and I was lucky to have been playing when he was and he was a Wycombe legend for that one season.

“For him to score one of our last winning goals at Crewe Alexandra before today, I’m sure there will have been a little smile up there watching Craig Mackail-Smith poke that one home.”


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