Wycombe Wanderers U18 (1) QPR U18 (1)

Team: Goodchild, Coyne, Brown, O’Brien, Ford, Harris, Folkes, Maguire, German, Rose, Arthur
Subs Used: Vanterpool for O’Brien, Wright for Harris and Balanta for Rose
Subs Not Used: Crowther and Gardner

Not having visited Bisham Abbey before, I found the trip most interesting with its tremendous facilities of course and everything beautifully kept. The Abbey itself was very impressive to look at, a beautiful historical building surrounded by lawns and flowers. I wish that I could say that the football itself also lived up to the surroundings but I’m afraid that wasn’t to be the case, especially in the 1st half.

QPR began with a team similar to last week’s 1-1 draw against Luton. The only change was Chris Arthur coming into the starting eleven and Cyrus Vanterpool dropping to the bench. Also, Michael Wright was added to the bench. It was a pretty quiet opening from the R’s with Wycombe doing most of the pressing. After 10 minutes, Billy Coyne did well to head a goal bound shot out of play. There seemed to be a lot of misplaced passes from Rangers at this stage of the game which became rather frustrating. It didn’t help much either when your inexperienced reporter was distracted by a frantic “discussion” between Roger, Tom, Alan and Rob as to whether a ball was offside or not. Roger and Tom were in line with the ball and said it was definitely offside but Alan and Rob said that no way was it. At this point, I thought I might have to do a little refereeing of my own to sort the four of them out !

Rangers had their first corner after 15 minutes but it was easily cleared. A free kick from Danny Maguire went well wide but shortly after, another free kick from Danny forced a good save from the Wycombe keeper. Another corner resulted in Antonio German heading the ball down in front of goal only to see it bounce up and over the crossbar. On 39 minutes, Ed Harris unfortunately took a blow in the face and had to go off and was replaced by Michael Wright. I later learnt that Ed had probably suffered a broken nose. Wycombe took the lead on 44 minutes when Josh Ford lost possession on the right and the ball was crossed over, headed back in front of goal and neatly side footed home.

Balanta and Vanterpool replaced Rose and O’Brien for the 2nd half. The R’s started brightly and there was a good free kick from Maguire and a ball cleared off the line by a Wycombe defender. The QPR equaliser finally came 10 minutes into the half following a strong throw-in from Brown who found German and resulted in a good cross which was well headed in by Vanterpool. The goal did seem to bring a breath of fresh air into the R’s play but unfortunately, they were unable to capitalise on any further chances.

Towards the end, a good shot from the home side could of won them the game but it was well held by Goodchild. Lee Brown had a good game and the ever improving Danny Maguire looked good as did Chris Goodchild in goal. The 4-3-3 formation did not seem to work well and it was a scrappy game but I’m sure things will improve. One more thing, Danny Maguire is 18 tomorrow (Sunday) Happy Birthday to him. For anyone not going to Leicester next week, the next game is away to Brentford in the Youth Alliance Cup, kick-off 11am. The U16’s are away to Northampton.

Pat Harrison