Wycombe Wanderers 0 Oxford United 1 (Wroe 87) + match highlights video

Wycombe Wanderers 0 Oxford United 1 (Wroe 87)

Wycombe Wanderers 0 Oxford United 1 (Wroe 87)

First published in Sport
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Herald Series: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Sports Reporter covering Oxford United. Follow us on twitter: @oxfordmailoufc. Call me on 01865 425458

A STUNNING strike from Nicky Wroe gave Oxford United a dramatic late breakthrough to finally see off a stubborn Wycombe Wanderers.

The midfielder's first goal for the U's lit up the afternoon and came as a huge relief to the visitors, who played against ten men for more than 70 minutes.

Steven Craig received a straight red for a clash with Johnny Mullins, but the away side struggled to open up a well organised Chairboys outfit.

Just as it began to look like a stalemate was on the cards, Wroe's quality strike found the net to give United their first victory in six games.

  • Match highlights - via Oxford United's Youtube channel

The visitors made three changes to their starting line-up from the midweek draw at Charlton Athletic in the FA Cup.

Wroe and Danny Rose came into midfield alongside Mullins, while Ryan Williams was restored to the XI as Scott Davies, Josh Ruffels and Tyrone Marsh all dropped to the bench.

The noise from United's away fans was the most notable element of an even opening to the game.

Michael Raynes leapt to head a David Hunt long throw narrowly wide with the first chance of the game, on ten minutes.

The defender came even closer a couple of minutes later, when goalkeeper Matt Ingram made a mess of coming to claim Rose's free-kick. Raynes headed the loose ball goalwards, but it was cleared off the line.

Wycombe were primed for their big derby and a fired-up Craig went head-to-head with Raynes.

Referee Brendan Malone ticked off both players, but had no hesitation in producing a straight red card at the next flashpoint.

On 18 minutes a long ball forward ended with Mullins in a heap on the floor. United's players were incensed with Craig, who was sent off for the violent clash.

The dismissal immediately changed the dynamic of the game, as Wycombe's priority became containing the U's.

The visitors were allowed to have the ball unchallenged in their half, but once they crossed into Chairboys territory it became tougher.

For all their patient possession, it took time for United to create chances.

A neat one-two with Mullins put James Constable into space out wide nine minutes before the break and his low cross just missed Sean Rigg at the back post.

Constable came the closest to breaking the deadlock in stoppage time. The striker, who scored at Adams Park last season, met Hunt's cross with a firm header, but Ingram flung himself to his left and made an excellent save.

U's boss Chris Wilder brought on Deane Smalley for Raynes at the break to provide an extra attacking option.

The pattern of the game continued, with Wycombe happy to let the opposition have the ball and defend their penalty area doggedly.

Just before the hour the ball fell to Wroe after Smalley's shot had been blocked, but the midfielder's effort skidded wide.

Constable and Williams also blasted half chances over as United searched for a breakthrough.

Despite the balance of play, the clearest opening fell to Wycombe.

A free-kick gave the hosts a rare moment going forward and from the set piece it fell to Gary Doherty at the back post, where his shot was smartly blocked by Ryan Clarke.

The game began to open up, which helped United find space in the final third.

Smalley, who had added energy since coming on, got in down the right and hung up a superb cross where Newey rose at the back post. A goal looked a certainty, but Leon Johnson made a fantastic block.

Time rapidly ebbed away and it was beginning to look another stalemate for United until, three minutes from the end of normal time, they dramatically found a way through.

The ball was laid off to Wroe, who launched a half-volley which flew into the far corner, sparking an explosion of joy from the away fans behind the goal.

A hurly-burly finish produced nervous moments at both ends in stoppage time, but United saw out the game to claim a precious victory.

Oxford Utd: Clarke, Hunt, Raynes (Smalley 46), Wright, Newey, Wroe, Mullins, Rose, Williams (Davies 90), Constable, Rigg (Ruffels 90).

Unused subs: Henly, Bevans, O'Dowda, Marsh.

Wycombe: Ingram, Arnold, Johnson, Doherty, Wood, McCoy, Scowen (Kretzschmar 85), Lewis, Bloomfield (Morias 89), McClure (Kuffour 71), Craig.

Unused subs: Horlock, Hause, Stewart, Mustoe.

Comments (14)

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6:24pm Sat 18 Jan 14

learned says...

No moaning or negativity from me today.
Great result. Well done boys.
Don't really like Wycombe and a dirty side as well !!
No moaning or negativity from me today. Great result. Well done boys. Don't really like Wycombe and a dirty side as well !! learned
  • Score: 17

6:32pm Sat 18 Jan 14

oldun says...

3 points is great (to state the obvious!) - but, phew!

Just two shots or target against a struggling ten man team (yes it was enough but... ).

Got to play much better to get back into that top 3.
3 points is great (to state the obvious!) - but, phew! Just two shots or target against a struggling ten man team (yes it was enough but... ). Got to play much better to get back into that top 3. oldun
  • Score: -16

7:17pm Sat 18 Jan 14

Yellowlines says...

I will say it again......we need a proper striker to play with Kitson
I will say it again......we need a proper striker to play with Kitson Yellowlines
  • Score: 9

7:19pm Sat 18 Jan 14

South Upper 87 says...

I thought we played well today created good movement and Wroe looks a very good signing., All fell apart with the finishing...not for the first time this season. Wilder has to do what he has failed in the last five years....find us a reliable striker and not a loanee. Surely the chairman would finance it considering the number of chances we create. A decent front man would have seen us four or five points clear at the top by now. Great support from the travelling fans today. Referee certainly wanted to be man of the match.
I thought we played well today created good movement and Wroe looks a very good signing., All fell apart with the finishing...not for the first time this season. Wilder has to do what he has failed in the last five years....find us a reliable striker and not a loanee. Surely the chairman would finance it considering the number of chances we create. A decent front man would have seen us four or five points clear at the top by now. Great support from the travelling fans today. Referee certainly wanted to be man of the match. South Upper 87
  • Score: 20

8:10pm Sat 18 Jan 14

Coyyellows says...

Where's big al tonight people . !?
Where's big al tonight people . !? Coyyellows
  • Score: 9

8:16pm Sat 18 Jan 14

BigAlBiker says...

Coyyellows wrote:
Where's big al tonight people . !?
Just in from the pub, great win yet again away from home in a hostile atmosphere, shame about the bookings but who cares, three points is in the bag.

Workman like performance, if we could get the shots on target things might have been easier.

Onwards and upwards, but still Wilder has to go.
[quote][p][bold]Coyyellows[/bold] wrote: Where's big al tonight people . !?[/p][/quote]Just in from the pub, great win yet again away from home in a hostile atmosphere, shame about the bookings but who cares, three points is in the bag. Workman like performance, if we could get the shots on target things might have been easier. Onwards and upwards, but still Wilder has to go. BigAlBiker
  • Score: -4

9:32pm Sat 18 Jan 14

Cirenyellows says...

A good win, it was never going to be pretty. It was all about the 3 points.

We got the points roll on the next game. An experienced loan striker (ideally from the Championship) would be useful to ensure a top 3 finish!!! With Whing, Potter and Meades to come back in the fold for the later part of the season when we will really need them.
A good win, it was never going to be pretty. It was all about the 3 points. We got the points roll on the next game. An experienced loan striker (ideally from the Championship) would be useful to ensure a top 3 finish!!! With Whing, Potter and Meades to come back in the fold for the later part of the season when we will really need them. Cirenyellows
  • Score: 10

9:37pm Sat 18 Jan 14

Richard Wickson says...

3points hard won thanks to solid defence and good midfield performance, coming after the Charlton game it was a much tougher game than we needed but it's often harder against 10 men. My complaint, here come the thumbs down, we still lack firepower, we need strikers that can strike with menace, not the powder puff guys we presently have. If they could score goals the midfield and defence would have an easier ride and we would kill off the opposition earlier, we play far too much high risk football whereas Scunthorpe and Rochdale and to a lesser extent Burton play less risky football that bring in the 3 points without the fear of conceding late equalisers or late losing goals. We need to score more and get the game sewn up earlier if we are to gain Promotion automatically.
3points hard won thanks to solid defence and good midfield performance, coming after the Charlton game it was a much tougher game than we needed but it's often harder against 10 men. My complaint, here come the thumbs down, we still lack firepower, we need strikers that can strike with menace, not the powder puff guys we presently have. If they could score goals the midfield and defence would have an easier ride and we would kill off the opposition earlier, we play far too much high risk football whereas Scunthorpe and Rochdale and to a lesser extent Burton play less risky football that bring in the 3 points without the fear of conceding late equalisers or late losing goals. We need to score more and get the game sewn up earlier if we are to gain Promotion automatically. Richard Wickson
  • Score: 11

9:39pm Sat 18 Jan 14

Davos P says...

South Upper 87 wrote:
I thought we played well today created good movement and Wroe looks a very good signing., All fell apart with the finishing...not for the first time this season. Wilder has to do what he has failed in the last five years....find us a reliable striker and not a loanee. Surely the chairman would finance it considering the number of chances we create. A decent front man would have seen us four or five points clear at the top by now. Great support from the travelling fans today. Referee certainly wanted to be man of the match.
Fully agree with you there. I was shocked when we retained Smalley. It would be incredibly wise now to strengthen up front and get Smalley out on loan if needs be. There must be a few strikers of decent calibre in L1 who are out of favour.
Great continuation of our away form. Massive credit to management, players and fans alike. Time to kick on at home now!
[quote][p][bold]South Upper 87[/bold] wrote: I thought we played well today created good movement and Wroe looks a very good signing., All fell apart with the finishing...not for the first time this season. Wilder has to do what he has failed in the last five years....find us a reliable striker and not a loanee. Surely the chairman would finance it considering the number of chances we create. A decent front man would have seen us four or five points clear at the top by now. Great support from the travelling fans today. Referee certainly wanted to be man of the match.[/p][/quote]Fully agree with you there. I was shocked when we retained Smalley. It would be incredibly wise now to strengthen up front and get Smalley out on loan if needs be. There must be a few strikers of decent calibre in L1 who are out of favour. Great continuation of our away form. Massive credit to management, players and fans alike. Time to kick on at home now! Davos P
  • Score: 8

12:05am Sun 19 Jan 14

The London Yellows says...

The finishing has been an issue for seasons. If we'd had a prolific striker we might be still in auto promotion position, why's it such a mystery?

It was a great win today against a dirty Wycombe side and James Constable's a legend but it doesn't take Sherlock Holmes to see where we're going wrong. We've got a couple of weeks to sort it out before the transfer deadline, please, please Mr Lenagan help us out!
The finishing has been an issue for seasons. If we'd had a prolific striker we might be still in auto promotion position, why's it such a mystery? It was a great win today against a dirty Wycombe side and James Constable's a legend but it doesn't take Sherlock Holmes to see where we're going wrong. We've got a couple of weeks to sort it out before the transfer deadline, please, please Mr Lenagan help us out! The London Yellows
  • Score: 13

6:43pm Sun 19 Jan 14

New Manor rename says...

Agree we need a striker but not too bothered about buying one. If we can loan a decent striker and get out of the league we can attract better strikers to purchase in the Summer. There are several knocking around the league 1 clubs who could fit the bill. Liam McAlinden at Wolves is rated by Premier League Clubs but doesn't play week in, week out and would be an ideal loan poach. He was on loan at Shrewsbury until Jan but was recalled In December. They may let him go again?
Agree we need a striker but not too bothered about buying one. If we can loan a decent striker and get out of the league we can attract better strikers to purchase in the Summer. There are several knocking around the league 1 clubs who could fit the bill. Liam McAlinden at Wolves is rated by Premier League Clubs but doesn't play week in, week out and would be an ideal loan poach. He was on loan at Shrewsbury until Jan but was recalled In December. They may let him go again? New Manor rename
  • Score: 5

10:30pm Sun 19 Jan 14

BenkiuGuasu says...

The three strikers we have are all decent at this level. But normally you would have 4.

Wroe plays quite high up doesn't he?

I think we should temper our expectations a little bit though. The club is operating at a loss, the home crowds have been crap for two years, and I would imagine Kitson and Constable take up large part of our wage bill already.
The three strikers we have are all decent at this level. But normally you would have 4. Wroe plays quite high up doesn't he? I think we should temper our expectations a little bit though. The club is operating at a loss, the home crowds have been crap for two years, and I would imagine Kitson and Constable take up large part of our wage bill already. BenkiuGuasu
  • Score: 2

11:58am Mon 20 Jan 14

adlibber says...

It was a much needed 3pts against a team low on form but then derby games are one offs. Wilder thinks we've turned the corner I hope he's right but unless we hit a run of form like Scunthorpe,Burton Southend very soon I fear the lottery of play offs will be upon us, or worse. I'm genuinely not bothered about going out of FA Cup promotion is the ultimate goal this season for me. I expect 5-7pts from next 3 games - I'm basing this on Wilder's optimism which is playing on my less cynical nature. We need a striker.
It was a much needed 3pts against a team low on form but then derby games are one offs. Wilder thinks we've turned the corner I hope he's right but unless we hit a run of form like Scunthorpe,Burton Southend very soon I fear the lottery of play offs will be upon us, or worse. I'm genuinely not bothered about going out of FA Cup promotion is the ultimate goal this season for me. I expect 5-7pts from next 3 games - I'm basing this on Wilder's optimism which is playing on my less cynical nature. We need a striker. adlibber
  • Score: 1

12:18pm Mon 20 Jan 14

oldun says...

Sad to think that Oxford City's big rivals of the 60s are now seen as our Derby opponents - mind you , they are! "Swindon and Reading , where are you when we need you ", says Mr Thumbs down (on principle)
Sad to think that Oxford City's big rivals of the 60s are now seen as our Derby opponents - mind you , they are! "Swindon and Reading , where are you when we need you ", says Mr Thumbs down (on principle) oldun
  • Score: 1

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