Login Register

Smith still looking on bright side

TWO more precious points went down the plughole as relegation haunted Wrexham threw everything bar the kitchen sink at Wycombe.

TWO more precious points went down the plughole as relegation haunted Wrexham threw everything bar the kitchen sink at Wycombe.

Manager Denis Smith highlighted the positive side of the performance, but deep down he knew two points had been lost rather than one won.

Smith said, "At least we kept a clean sheet and are playing with more consistency. People are finding it difficult to beat us but perhaps we need a break."

Smith, and Wrexham fans in another pitifully small crowd, thought his side should have had at least one penalty from this stalemate encounter.

There were half-hearted appeals when Wycombe defenders blocked shots but Wrexham did seem to have a more valid case for a penalty when Hector Sam was tugged down in the second half but that was also ruled aside by referee Ray Olivier.

Smith was again without his injured top scorer Craig Faulconbridge and the suspended Lee Trundle so he used Andy Morrell down the middle with Sam and Michael Blackwood providing the ammunition.

Trinidadian international Sam was Wrexham's best outlet in the first half when Wycombe, who were without five key players, struggled to keep him quiet.

Morrell had a couple of half chances early on but there was also a scare for the Red Dragons.

Keith Ryan nipped in front of man-of-the-match Steve Roberts to fire in a shot that Jim Whitley whipped off the line.

But Wrexham came closest to a goal from a set-piece on 16 minutes.Darren Ferguson's corner kick was won by skipper Bryan Carey but his header was deflected on to the crossbar for another corner by defender Steve Brown.

Frustration mounted as Wrexham ran out of ideas on how to break down Wycombe and there were angry chants of "Attack attack" as the Dragons slipped into a negative mode of passing the ball backwards or sideways.

Deadball specialist Ferguson struck a free-kick that was well within his range and there were boos as the half-time whistle went.

Ferguson forced Martyn Taylor into an early second-half save and Wycombe's ever-present goalkeeper then did very well to tip over a shot from Waynne Phillips.

But it just wouldn't go in for Wrexham and Smith used all three substitutes in a desperate last throw of the dice to win it.

Carlos Edwards replaced Blackwood, Martyn Chalk came on for Stephen Thomas and in the last few minutes of stoppage time Robin Gibson replaced Phillips.

The crowd did their best to lift the players but Wycombe held out and almost snatched victory with a superbly-struck effort from Dannie Bulman.

Wrexham begin their defence of the FAW Premier Cup tomorrow night with a quarter-final knockout game at Carmarthen.

Meanwhile, Reading chalked up their fourth win in a row with a 1-0 victory at Huddersfield to boost their promotion bid.

Nicky Forster's eighth of the campaign on 56 minutes was enough to secure the three points at the McAlpine Stadium and extend the unbeaten run of Alan Pardew's team to six games.

Match facts

Wrexham: Rogers, Whitley, Holmes, Roberts, Carey, Sam, Phillips (Gibson, 90), Ferguson, Thomas (Chalk, 76), Blackwood (Edwards, 68), Morrell, subs not used Walsh, Lawrence.

Wycombe: Taylor, Cousins, Carroll, Ryan (Holligan, 63), Roberts (Lee, 81), McSporran (Devine, 76), Rogers, Currie, Bulman, Simpson, Brown subs not used Osbourne, Johnson.

Referee: R Olivier (Sutton Coldfield)
Attendance: 2,752
Best moment: There wasn't one.


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