Match Report: Wycombe Wanderers 0 Walsall 2 Match Report: Wycombe Wanderers 0 Walsall 2

Match Report: Wycombe Wanderers 0 Walsall 2

Here is our Match Report from the Saddlers' Emirates FA Cup - First Round clash with Wycombe Wanderers.
Walsall made the trip to Adams Park on Saturday afternoon as they and hosts Wycombe Wanderers looked to book their place in the Second Round of the world's oldest domestic cup competition.

Looking to build upon their recent 1-0 win over Rochdale, Michael Flynn's side were tasked with defeating higher-league opposition as former Red Gareth Ainsworth and his Chairboys were hoping to avoid a potential banana skin on the road to the next round.

Following a minute of silence to remember the fallen, the match got underway, and four minutes into the contest, Walsall saw their first half chance of the afternoon lost as an Isaac Hutchinson effort from outside the area was blocked.

Wycombe created the first real chance of the game in the ninth minute, as Sam Vokes worked himself into space before firing a powerful effort goal-wards, but Walsall shot-stopper, Owen Evans was alert to the danger and did enough to tip the ball round the post, with the resulting corner coming to nothing.

The game settled as it continued, but Walsall won a corner in the twentieth minute, as Hutchinson fired an effort in from a tight angle, with the ball being turned out of play by Wycombe 'keeper, Max Stryjek. The flag-kick fell to Liam Gordon who flicked on for Hutchinson, whose curling effort aimed at the far post, sailed narrowly wide.

The Saddlers continued to press, and twenty-five minutes in, Liam Kinsella set up Tom Knowles, who drove into space before unleashing a shot on goal, which sailed inches over the crossbar.

Walsall went close again, just one minute later, as Danny Johnson found space to shoot from inside the area, but his effort was saved by an alert Stryjek. The visiting side continued to cause problems for their hosts defences, with Hutchinson forcing another save from the besieged 'keeper, with a shot from outside the area, moments later, though the resulting corner would come to nothing.

Unperturbed, the visiting side continued to seek out an opening, with Donervon Daniels seeing an effort blocked by the Wycombe shot-stopper, in the twenty-ninth minute.

The hosts were eventually able to work the ball to the other end, to relieve the pressure a little, with Jordan Obita seeing a headed effort from the centre of the box saved by Evans.

Walsall were unlucky not to open the scoring in the thirty-sixth minute, as Jacob Maddox crossed the ball in for Gordon, whose effort on goal sailed inches wide of the upright, when he really ought to have scored.

The hosts had soon worked the ball back to the other end, where they won a corner as Kinsella diverted the ball out of play, but nothing would come of the flag-kick as the Saddlers defences stood firm.

The Saddlers won a corner in the forty-first minute, as Ryan Tafazolli guided the ball out of play. The ball in from Gordon was met by Maddox, who fired home from the centre of the box to open the scoring, as Stryjek got a hand to the ball but was unable to keep it out.

Two additional minutes were added to end the first-half, but there was little further action of note and the sides headed off to enjoy their half-time refreshments with Walsall leading by one-goal-to-nil.


The teams returned unchanged after the break, and the action got back underway. Both sides enjoyed spells on the ball in the early goings, but four minutes into the second-half, a trip by Knowles on Sullay Kaikai inside the area, led to Wycombe being awarded a penalty. Brandon Hanlan stepped forth to take the spot-kick, but failed to capitalise as his right-footed effort aimed for the bottom corner was saved by Evans.

The game settled after that, but ten minutes into the half, the Saddlers felt they should have been awarded a penalty themselves as Johnson went down inside the area, but the referee was unmoved by their appeals and waved play on.

Wanderers almost levelled the scores, three minutes later, as Vokes fired an effort goal-wards from twenty yards out, but Evans was alert to the danger and gathered.

With sixty-two minutes on the clock, Walsall doubled their advantage, as Maddox cut the ball back to Hutchinson, who fired home.

The hosts responded by making three changes to their line-up, in the sixty-fourth minute, as Sullay Kaikai, Lewis Wing and Brandon Hanlan made way for Anis Mehmeti, Daryl Horgan and D'Mani Bughail-Mellor.

The Saddlers also made a change moments later, with Jacob Maddox departing in favour of Taylor Allen.

Mehmeti wasted little time in getting involved in the action, seeing an effort from outside the area miss just five minutes after his introduction into the game. The home side continued to press, with David Wheeler seeing a headed effort from close range blocked moments later.

That would be David Wheeler's final contribution, as both he and Jack Wakely were substituted in the seventy-second minute, with Nick Freeeman and Tjay De Barr taking their places.

The hosts continued to seek to pull a goal back, with Vokes seeing an effort from a tight angle blocked behind by Hayden White, in the eighty-second minute, with the resulting corner coming to nothing.

Wycombe had soon worked their way back into shooting range, but Mehmeti's eighty-fourth minute effort from the edge of the area was also blocked.

As we reached the ninetieth minute, Walsall opted to make two further changes to their line-up, with Danny Johnson and Tom Knowles making way for Andy Williams and Peter Clarke.

Six additional minutes were added to end the match, during which time, Freeman saw an effort blocked, before a Mehmeti shot was saved by Evans in the ninety-fifth minute.

Walsall chose to make a late substitution, with Hayden White making way for debutant, Oisin McEntee in the ninety-sixth minute.

There was little time for the recently introduced man to get involved in the action, as the game was brought to it's conclusion moments later, with Walsall winning by two-goals-to-nil, to advance into the Second Round of the competition.


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