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MATCH REPORT

PUBLISHED
16:35 27th April 2013
By  Chris Parsons

Match report from Adams Park

 

Saturday 27th April 2013

Wycombe Wanderers v Port Vale

League Two

At Adams Park 

Attendance: 7120 (2828 away)


WYCOMBE WANDERERS: Matt Ingram, Marvin McCoy, Charles Dunne, Dave Winfield, Kortney Hause, Bruno Andrade, Matt Spring, Stuart Lewis, Sam Wood, Joel Grant, Dean Morgan. 
SUBS: Lee Harrison, Leon Johnson, Gareth Ainsworth, Jo Kuffour, Michael Harriman, Gary Doherty, Junior Morias.  

PORT VALE:Chris Neal, John McCombe, Doug Loft, Ashley Vincent, Tom Pope, Chris Shuker, Sam Morsy, Darren Purse, Richard Duffy, Chris Bichall, Daniel Jones. 
SUBS: Adam Yates, Anthony Griffith, Louis Dodds, Jennison Myrie-Williams, Ryan Lloyd, Liam Chilvers, Lee Hughes.  

Vale had to settle for a share of the points at Adams Park on the last day of the season after a Lee Hughes header earned Vale a 1-1 draw. The draw was enough to see Vale officially promoted to League One in third place. 

Wycombe took the lead from the penalty spot on the half-hour mark after goalkeeper Chris Neal brought down Wycombe striker Dean Morgan who duly dispatched.

Substitute Hughes headed home a Chris Shuker corner late-on to the delight of the travelling Vale supporters.

Vale manager Micky Adams made six changes to the side that drew 2-2 with Northampton last week. Defender John McCombe replaced Liam Chilvers in the heart of the defence. 

Elsewhere in defence Adam Yates dropped to the bench with Richard Duffy coming in at right-back.

In midfield Sam Morsy, Chris Shuker and Chris Birchall replaced Anthony Griffth, Louis Dodds and Jennison Myrie-Williams.

Up front Ashley Vincent made his first start since recovering from a serious ankle injury to line-up alongside League Two Player of the Year Tom Pope. 

Within the opening five minutes striker Pope was played through by Vincent, the 31 goal striker saw his effort glide over the bar. 

Vale continued to apply early pressure to the delight of the 2800 travelling Vale supporters who were in full voice. 

The Valiants continued to dominate proceedings until Wycombe forward Morgan worked his space well down the left wing until defender Duffy was there to intercept at the expense of a Wycombe corner.

Morgan again began to threaten Vale’s back line but this time his shot let him down, flying into the Vale crowd behind goalkeeper Neal’s goal. 

Vale’s first clear-cut chance came after 20 minutes, a Shuker free-kick on the right-wing floated into the box and found its way to Pope but the striker could only shoot over the bar from 10 yards. 

Great work from Shuker and Loft down the right-wing saw midfielder Shuker fizz an inviting in-swinging cross into the box, Pope and Wycombe goalkeeper Matt Ingram leapt but the goalkeeper held on to the ball. 

Wycombe took an unexpected lead on the half-hour mark when Neal dropped a looping cross, in the process Neal stopped Morgan from getting to the loose ball. The referee pointed to the spot and Morgan who earned the penalty stepped up to send Neal the wrong way. 

Vale almost replied instantly when McCombe had a shot blocked on the line from a Shuker corner. 

With 36 minutes gone Birchall took aim with an ambitious volley but the ball squirmed away from the Wycombe goal. 

The match started in bright April sunshine but by half-time Adams Park was immersed in April showers. 

Vale emerged early from half-time eager to get back into the game and secure second place in League Two. 

Vale started brightly, captain Loft burst through the Wycombe defence but he had to settle for a corner after being charged down.

Loft again the architect, this time a neat one-two with Vincent allowed space to squeeze in a cross but the expectant Pope could not out-muscle the Wycombe goalkeeper.

Youngster Ryan Lloyd replaced Morsy after 55 minutes.

Vale striker Vincent could not make the most of a header which lacked power to trouble the Wycombe goalkeeper. 

It proved to be Vincent’s last contribution, the striker who was making his first appearance since injuring his ankle was replaced by Lee Hughes on 62 minutes. 

Moments later Duffy was replaced by winger Myrie-Williams.

Wycombe’s Sam Wood skipped past Loft who was now occupying the right-back role but the pacey winger couldn't keep his shot on target as the ball whistled over Neal’s bar.

Loft nearly scored the goal of the season on 73 minutes, the captain cut inside from the right and unleashed a venomous shot from 30 yards. 

Wycombe’s goalkeeper Ingram got a crucial finger-tip on the ball. 

Former Vale player Gareth Ainsworth made his 600th and final appearance as a player after coming on as a substitute with less than 15 minutes to go. The Wycombe player-manager came on to a standing ovation from both sets of fans.

The chants were short lived as Lee Hughes nodded home a Shuker corner to draw Vale level with 10 minutes left to play. Pope met the corner but striker Hughes diverted the angle of the header leaving the goalkeeper wrong-footed and helpless.

With minutes on the clock Ainsworth almost scored a fairy-tale goal but he couldn't get his toe on the end of an inviting cross.

Hughes had an unbelievable penalty appeal turned down by the referee. Lloyd played a perfect through ball and as Hughes was about to pull the trigger his leg was taken from under him. 

Ainsworth had a chance to win it late on for Wycombe after finding himself in space but he could only shoot into Neal’s arms.

The season is over and Vale are going up!

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