Friday, 25 March 2016

Wycombe Wanderers 1 v Mansfield Town 0 - SkyBet League 2

Friday 25th March 2016
SkyBet League 2
at Adams Park
Wycombe Wanderers (0) 1
Michael Harriman 68
Mansfield Town (0) 0
Admission £22. Programme £3. 
Attendance 5003 (216 away fans)
Make no mistake, this was a poor game, very poor indeed.
Ryan Tafazolli put in a good shift for the Stags, so did Krystian Pearce, but much as I've tried I cannot find any further positives to draw even a crumb of comfort from out of today's 'efforts' by the Stags.
Although it was only a single goal defeat... and a rather fluky goal at that, when Michael Harriman's attempted cross from the bi-line on the right hand side of the area, sneaked in just inside the left hand post... I honestly can't recall Mansfield having a single effort on target during the whole 90+6 minutes.
Wycombe weren't a whole lot better than the visitors, but they did just about enough to warrant the three points, especially in the second half.
I don't need to make a 320 mile round trip and stump up an outlay of £22 to get in (home fans could gain admission for between £13 and £10), to see a public demonstration of lackadaisical finishing and misplaced stray passes, by two teams of well paid professional footballers. I can watch this standard of football on the rec' down the road from my house for free most on Sunday mornings.
Northampton Town visit the One Call Stadium/Field Mill on Monday, they are virtually assured of the title now and will be backed by a completely sold out away end. 
The Cobblers success story is nothing short of remarkable, given the problems the club was having not so long ago. Good luck to them I say. Though not on Monday obviously.
The Stags will be up against it, that is for sure... and the last thing they will need is for their own fans to start getting on their backs, but I've got 10 to 15 minutes in the 'when will the moaning start sweepstakes', so fingers crossed that the angry mob lay off for at least a little while.
So, where's the detailed report? You may well be asking... the truth is, there weren't many details to report.
Oh well, at least I don't need to worry about booking any time off work for the promotion play off games, or queuing up for tickets for any showpiece final.
There's always next year, or the one after.
But being a pragmatic realist, I had predicted a mid table finish this season, but though this Stags team overachieved for a while, getting everybody's hopes up into the bargain, that is still within their scope, unless the players continue to 'perform' like they did today.
Small steps are being made in the right direction, but they're nothing like big strides... not yet! 
The Under 18's powerhouse Zayn Hakeem travelled down with the squad and was involved in the warm up, but he didn't appear on the team sheet. It was a shame that he wasn't available from the subs bench, because Zayn is the sort of player who will chase the ball down and put opposition defenders under pressure and he could've fitted into the role Matt Green was playing, while the Stags striker moved into a more central position, where his attributes would be better suited... just a thought.
FT: Wycombe Wanderers 1 v Mansfield Town 0
Disheartened, frustrated and probably even angry towards some of the players who I didn't think wanted it enough this afternoon, but we've had worse days than this and given time, we'll have fare better days too. But as things stand tonight, I'm so fed up that I am not going back to watch the Stags first team again... until Monday!