Login Register

Clean sheet gives boss heart for relegation fight

WREXHAM manager Denis Smith talked up his side's chances of avoiding relegation to the third division after Saturday's 0-0 Racecourse draw against Wycombe Wanderers.

WREXHAM manager Denis Smith talked up his side's chances of avoiding relegation to the third division after Saturday's 0-0 Racecourse draw against Wycombe Wanderers.

The Red Dragons' boss admitted he was disappointed not to have taken all three points but, optimistic as ever, he said: "At least we kept a clean sheet and we are proving we are not a team that belongs at the bottom. At least we are getting consistency; we are looking a decent side now and people are finding it difficult to beat us.

Despite dominating much of the second half, a Wrexham side missing leading goalscorers Craig Faulconbridge and Lee Trundle failed to break down a resolute Wycombe defence and Smith added: "It's frustrating because we got in enough good positions today and perhaps we need a break. One of the penalty decisions might have gone for us or a deflection could have gone in but it didn't happen.

"It's disappointing but again we've proved that we are capable of living with teams who are in the top half of the division without any problems. In the end, it was attack against defence as far as we were concerned but you have to break people down.

"I'll have the two strikers back next week, who are my two top goalscorers, and Kevin Sharp should also be fit so I might have selection problems in terms of people to choose from.

But Smith had no complaints about his defensive players. "I thought the two centre backs were extremely good and Jim Whitley was just Jim, you always know what you're going to get from him," he added.

"Defensively we didn't look to be in any trouble but when it's 0-0 and you're not taking your chances, you wonder whether you are going to concede a goal as we did last week against Colchester United and against Bristol City.

"But we didn't concede any silly goals and that was pleasing. But I was hoping we were going to get the win, which is what we need. We performed well enough, but if you don't take your chances, that's disappointing."

Striker Hector Sam was the main culprit but Smith was not over-critical of the Trinidadian, saying: "Hector constantly went past his defender without actually getting the final ball in. And when we got in good positions the finishing was not what we would have liked it to be.

"His running and turning and getting into positions was great. In training, he has a touch and bends them in the corner or chips the keeper, but today he was snatching at them. Hopefully, he'll take confidence from the way in which he ran their lad ragged," he added.

"We had four appeals for hand-ball off crosses and some referees give them, others don't. Hector and the lads said he was definitely pulled down in the box when he was turning but it was hard to see from where I was.

"I had a joke with the referee afterwards but there's no point in having a go because he's doing his job as he sees it and whether he's right or wrong, there's nothing you can do.

"We didn't get enough out of the other side from Michael Blackwood but the defender was clever and stood away from him. Andy Morrell didn't play as well as he did last week and the midfield didn't make the runs I would have liked.

"But you're always wanting more and, in the end, we are proving we can live with anyone in the league. Nobody is now looking as though they are going to take us to pieces but we have to start beating them."


David Holmes
Chief News Reporter
David Norbury
Mike Fuller
Contact Us
Full contact details