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Match Reports

Wycombe 1-0 Walsall

22 April 2019

The Saddlers’ survival hopes suffered a major setback as ex-Walsall right-back Jason McCarthy’s superb second-half free-kick earned Wycombe a narrow victory.

The first attempt from either side fell to the visitors as Cameron Norman’s monster long throw was cleared as far as Joe Edwards, whose half-volley bounced harmlessly wide.

Another long throw, this time from Luke Leahy, was punched away by Ryan Allsop straight to Isaiah Osbourne but his hooked effort was held by the Chairboys custodian.

Wycombe’s first meaningful chance came on 26 minutes when Michael Harriman’s floated free-kick was glanced wide by Adebayo Akinfenwa at the far post.

Akinfenwa had another sight of goal moments later, taking down McCarthy’s long ball on his chest before hitting a fizzing drive straight at Saddlers stopper Chris Dunn.

The next opening came early in the second half, Edwards delivering a deep cross to the far post but Leahy headed high and wide.

It was the home side who opened the scoring with 54 minutes on the clock.

Connor Johnson fouled Akinfenwa on the edge of the box and McCarthy curled a peach of a free-kick over the wall and past a motionless Dunn.

Interim Manager Martin O’Connor used all three substitutes in an attempt to reinvigorate his side, bringing on the attacking trio of Andy Cook, Zeli Ismail and Corey Blackett-Taylor.

The Saddlers fashioned a rare chance with 13 minutes remaining as Josh Gordon’s scuffed effort after a quick counter-attack was easily gathered by Allsop.

Six minutes of added time were played but the visitors were unable to muster another opportunity.

 

Wycombe (4-4-2): Allsop; McCarthy, Jombati, El-Abd, Harriman; Kashket (Cowan-Hall 85’), Thompson, Gape (Bloomfield 60’), Freeman (Tyson 60’); Akinfenwa, Samuel.

Subs not used: Ma-Kalambay, Jacobsen, Stewart, Bean.

 

Saddlers (4-4-2): Dunn; Devlin, Scarr, Johnson, Laird; Norman (Ismail 70’), Osbourne, Edwards, Leahy (Blackett-Taylor 73’); Gordon, Oteh (Cook 61’).

Subs not used: L Roberts, Guthrie, Kinsella, Dobson.

 

Attendance: 5,595 (547 Saddlers fans).


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