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Season 2004-2005 : Yeovil Town v Wycombe Wanderers : Saturday 23rd April 2005
Coca-Cola League Two : Yeovil Town 1 - 1 Wycombe Wanderers

Venue: Huish Park
Sat 23rd April 2005, 3pm kick-off.

Conditions: Breezy, sunny periods
Pitch: Very good

Scorers: Clint Easton (23, 0-1), Lee Johnson (25, 1-1)

Attendance: 7,421 (including 458 Wycombe fans)

Referee: Andy Hall (West Midlands)
Assistants: Martin Cassidy (Somerset) and Eric Mackrell (Hampshire)

Bookings:
Yeovil: Kevin Amankwaah (35, foul), Bartosz Tarachulski (45, foul)
Wycombe: Robert Lee (46, foul), Gus Uhlenbeek (54, foul)

Team Line-Ups

Yeovil Town : (4-3-3)
13. Steven Collis
12. Kevin Amankwaah 4. Terry Skiverton 14. Efetobore Sodje 3. Michael Rose
7. Paul Terry
8. Lee Johnson 6. Darren Way
9. Kevin Gall 11. Phil Jevons 25. Arron Davies

Subs: 1. Chris Weale (GK) 5. Colin Miles 16. Andy Lindegaard (72, for Gall) 18. Bartosz Tarachulski (31, for Rose) 27. Andrejs Stolcers (75, for Jevons)

Wycombe Wanderers : (4-4-2)
1. Frank Talia
2. Gus Uhlenbeek 6. Mike Williamson 5. Roger Johnson 17. Clint Easton
14. Matt Bloomfield 27. Robert Lee 8. Joe Burnell 4. Keith Ryan
26. Steve Claridge 9. Nathan Tyson

Subs: 31. Lance Cronin (GK) 19. Stuart Nethercott 11. Mark Philo (76, for Ryan) 10. Ian Stonebridge (69, for Easton) 12. Jonny Dixon (80, for Lee)

Match Report

Just one change to the line-up from last week's point at Kidderminster. Kevin Amankwaah's performance as a substitute at Aggborough might have been good enough for him to displace Adam Lockwood from the side, with perhaps the presence of Wycombe's pacy striker Nathan Tyson being part of Gary Johnson's thinking. However the decision was made for the manager with Lockwood suffering from a minor injury and not able even to make the bench. The Yeovil manager was unsurprisingly given a generous round of applause by the Huish Park crowd, acknowledging his act of loyalty in signing a three year deal on the Friday as the game began.

The game got off to a bit of a messy start with tackles flying everywhere. Steve Collis and the defence got stuck in no-man's land when a ball coming back to Collis almost fell short, but fortunately Skiverton ensured that the resulting hook by a Wycombe player towards goal was cleared. Michael Rose had produced a good cross that went flashing past everyone, but then Claridge caused the Westland Stand much amusement when his attempts to produce a diving header from a Matt Bloomfield cross resulted in a belly flop in the goalmouth and plenty of "Weymouth Reject" chants coming from the home support. This was truly comedy at it's best.

Nathan Tyson saw one of his crosses evade his team-mates, with Claridge huffing and puffing about 10 yards behind play, whilst at the other end Frank Talia misjudged a Michael Rose cross that curled in towards the back post and was eventually palmed away for a corner. As play swung from end to end Wycombe then created another chance with Efe Sodje having to block close to his own goal-line in the midst of a goalmouth scramble which ended with Matt Bloomfield's attempt to chip over the mass of bodies being headed away by Terry Skiverton.

Neither side had been exactly carving out chances during the game, although it had to be said that Wycombe had slightly edged things in that department, although when they won a free kick 30 yards from goal there seemed to be little danger. Paul Terry had marginally fouled Robert Lee but when Lee dummied his way over the ball, full-back Clint EASTON curled a shot in the other direction, rising over the wall and into the top right hand corner. Although Steve Collis got a palm to the ball, he had little chance of keeping the shot out.

Against Mansfield, Yeovil showed signs that they had broken through their mental blocks and that their ability to turn round goal deficits had returned once again. It was therefore pleasing to see a near instant response from the Glovers with a goal that eclipsed Easton's spectacular effort. Keith Ryan put in a high challenge on Arron Davies and whilst he was still protesting his innocence, Darren Way's quickly taken free kick was side-footed to Phil Jevons, who immediately slotted the ball through to Lee JOHNSON whose 30 yard drive smashed off the underside of the crossbar for his 11th goal of the season. Yet another in a very long list of contenders for Yeovil Town's goal of the season - has one year brought more spectacular goals in such a short space in time?

With half an hour gone, Gary Johnson appeared unconvinced with his starting tactics, taking off Michael Rose, who appeared to have let a few bad passes go to his head a bit. This is a player that needs a bit more support from the crowd when things go wrong, but also on occasions, a little more positional support from his team-mates would not have gone amiss. Bartosz Tarachulski was the popular replacement, meaning a complete reshuffle of the line-up as Paul Terry landed in as a right-back, Arron Davies and Kevin Gall switched to left and right wing respectively whilst Bartosz partnered Phil Jevons up front in a 4-4-2 formation.

Kevin Amankwaah was booked for a foul on Nathan Tyson, although the Glovers seemed to be imposing themselves more on the game following the reshuffle. Arron Davies danced his way through a couple of tackles before firing over the bar. Then a quick Lee Johnson free kick after Arron Davies was fouled by Gus Uhlenbeek forced Frank Telia to be at his sharpest by diving quickly to his right.

As the half drew to a close Bartosz Tarachulski landed in the book for a rather tame looking foul on Roger Johnson, where all the big Pole seemed to have done was to have leant into his opponent on the challenge. Unfortunately referee Andy Hall was one of those "random" referees who it was mainly impossible to predict which fair challenges were fouls and which fouls were fair challenges. This was an excellent fast-flowing game between two teams that wanted to win and were doing it in the best way possible - by playing purist football. It didn't deserve to be broken up in the manner that referee Hall was doing so.

Half-time: Yeovil Town 1 - 1 Wycombe Wanderers

Big names playing for lower league clubs often look like they are astute clever signings, but bar the odd case like Woking's signing of Clive Walker more often than not they are in practice bad ideas based on that person's reputation as a past player rather than his present abilities. Thus the first notable contribution to the game of Robert Lee was to open the half with a booking for a foul on Darren Way inside 20 seconds of the whistle blowing. He was probably noticeable on one other occasion later on in the game - when he was substituted.

As is so often the case, stick the Glovers towards the Westland Stand and it is as noticeable as Liverpool kicking towards the Kop end, and so began a second half onslaught. Bartosz Tarachulski laid the ball off for Darren Way, who rode a couple of tackles before nudging the ball just wide of the post. Next Bartosz probably should have done better after he was presented with a gift by Lee Johnson who had just had his own attempt saved by Talia. Johnson laid the rebound back to him 10 yards out but the big striker scuffed his shot wide.

Gus Uhlenbeek was the next player booked for a high challenge on Bartosz Tarachulski, whilst Kevin Gall cut in from the right and struck his angled shot against the outside of the goalframe leaving the Bartlett Stand on their feet thinking Yeovil had taken the lead, only to see the ball bounce outside the goal. The move had seen some wonderful interchanges between Bartosz and Phil Jevons prior to setting Gally free, and there was no doubt that Wycombe were now seriously on the back foot.

More beautiful footballing simplicity could be witnessed on the hour mark as Phil Jevons shielded the ball then nudged it into the path of Kevin Amankwaah who ran straight through the huge gap left, cutting inside and forcing Talia into yet another excellent save.

Wycombe were being forced to feed off scraps and Gus Uhlenbeek's 62nd minute drive from a narrow angle was about as close as they got, with his optimistic attempt going two or three yards wide of the mark. But all the other action was at the other end of the field as Phil Jevons picked up a long ball over the top, chesting down the bouncing ball and this time having the Yeovil College Stand on their feet as Jevons struck the outside of the goalframe on the other side of the pitch.

Midway through the second half saw an outrageous piece of goalkeeping by Wycombe's Frank Talia. Kevin Gall's cross into the middle was inch-perfect for Phil Jevons to launch a diving header at goal, which he struck into the ground and across the face of the Wycombe keeper. Somehow a single palm kept the ball out as Wanderers escaped again. Two minutes later Jevons was involved again as Paul Terry put him through on goal but the league's top scorer was completely out of luck as the ball nudged wide of the post. On another day, Jevons could have been claiming the match ball by now.

With the ball doing everything around the Westland Stand goalmouth except going where fate demanded it to, the phrase "one of those days" seemed to be looming larger and larger. Gary Johnson tried to shake things up by introducting Andy Lindegaard and Andrejs Stolcers for Kevin Gall and Phil Jevons but Yeovil never quite got the rhythm going again after the change, with neither substitute showing much to demand a starting place in the side next week.

Mark Philo, on as a substitute for the visitors, reminded Wycombe there was a goal at the other end of the park to aim at when he ran in from the right wing and forced Paul Terry to deflect his shot for a corner. But Yeovil continued to pressurise albeit in more sporadic fashion and had two great chances to snatch a late winner. Andrejs Stolcers stuck in a ball to the back post which Bartosz Tarachulski slid in to meet, but the ball nudged agonisingly inches wide of the post. Next Efe Sodje could not believe his luck as he picked up a loose ball from a Lee Johnson corner that he thumped at goal only to find the ball smashed against a defender's body on the line. The Yeovil players screamed for a handball but referee Andy Hall pointed to his chest and play was waved on.

Rather improbably, despite all of the excess second half pressure, it was Wycombe who could have committed what would have been daylight robbery right at the death when three minutes into injury time, Nathan Tyson got his first clear sight of goal of the game as he attempted to nudge a cross past Steve Collis but the Yeovil keeper palmed it away from goal with the outside of the post helping it on its way.

And so ended a great game and with little doubt one of the best pieces of entertainment served up at Huish Park this season. The one piece of frustration was that the Glovers deserved to win the game by a mile on their second half performance and only some improbable misses and some outstanding goalkeeping stopped the game from ending in a thrashing against a useful looking Wycombe side. To their credit, Wycombe came to Huish Park to win AND to play football - there aren't too many visiting sides this season who can claim that. A frustrating outcome for Yeovil, but what the team must take into their final two games is the knowledge that if they put in that second half performance across their games against Southend and Lincoln then they will be very unlucky to not gain automatic promotion this season.

Badger

MOTM Vote Result:

Player MOTM Score
Efe Sodje 23 628
Lee Johnson 17 448
Kevin Amankwaah 11 397
Terry Skiverton 4 128
Darren Way 3 100

Overall match rating: 8 / 10
Performance: 7.5
Entertainment: 8.5

58 votes received.

Any comments/questions please email ytfcmotm@ntlworld.com

Full-time: Yeovil Town 1 - 1 Wycombe Wanderers
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Last Updated : 23rd April 2005
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