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Match Reports

City 1 Wycombe Wanderers 1

Grecians held at home by Chairboys

10 February 2018

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Exeter City were held to a 1-1 draw by promotion rivals Wycombe Wanderers at St James Park in Sky Bet League Two.

Despite going ahead in the first half through Lloyd James' free-kick, they were pegged back by Marcus Bean's finish early in the second half.

The Grecians fought to go ahead again and had half-chances towards the end of the match but were unable to find a second of the afternoon.

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Paul Tisdale made four changes to the City side that were narrowly beaten at Luton Town last weekend with Lee Holmes, Liam McAlinden and Pierce Sweeney returning to the side alongside captain Jordan Moore-Taylor, who made his return from a hip flexor injury.

Both sides began the match with obvious game plans on a difficult pitch at St James Park as City looked to use the height of Jayden Stockley to their advantage, and Wycombe looking to use the power of Adebayo Akinfenwa up front.

The Grecians went ahead on 12 minutes with their first real attempt when James’ in-swinging free-kick wide on the left managed to evade everyone in the Wycombe area, including goalkeeper Scott Brown, as the ball nestled in the far corner.

Gareth Ainsworth’s side, who had been the victim of some loose passing for much of the opening 30 minutes, had their first chance when Dominic Gape’s cross from the left almost found Akinfenwa, but after good defending by Dean Moxey, the forward was unable to make contact with the ball at the far post.

In a combative first half City continued to dominate the chances with Moxey shooting over from the edge of the box before Stockley’s flicked header towards the far post trickled just wide with the onrushing Jordan Tillson unable to knock the ball over the line.

The Grecians made an enforced change just before half-time when the impressive Jordan Storey, who made his second successive league start, picked up a blow to his face after challenging with Akinfenwa as City too their narrow lead into the break.

It was the Chairboys who had the first chance of the second period when a cross in was held up well by Akinfenwa before the ball fell to Paris Cowan-Hall, but his low effort was saved well by Christy Pym.

But soon after the away side were level when a long ball into the box eventually fell to Bean at the far post who slotted the ball past Pym to bring Wycombe back into the match.

In a much more open affair, City then had a good chance to go back in front when Lee Holmes did well down the left before he crossed well for Sweeney, but his low header was straight at Brown.

Half chances continued to fall for both sides but neither team were able to fashion enough clear-cut chances to test Pym or Brown in the Wycombe goal.

The Grecians did test the Wycombe keeper in the 87th minute when a corner kick eventually fell to substitute Ryan Harley just inside the box, but his half volley was straight at Brown.

City continued to press into injury time but were unable to create a clear enough opportunity to go ahead again. They now set their sights on a midweek trip to Port Vale on Tuesday night.

Exeter City: Pym, Sweeney, James, Tillson, Holmes (Harley, 66), Stockley, Moore-Taylor, McAlinden (Edwards, 73), Moxey, Taylor, Storey (Woodman, 45)

Subs not used: Jones, Simpson, Wilson, Boateng

Booked: Sweeney, Holmes, James

Wycombe Wanderers: Brown, Jacobson, Gape, El-Abd, Bean, Bloomfield, Cowan-Hall (Mackail-Smith, 76), Moore, Akinfenwa, Tyson (Freeman, 82), Scarr (McGinley, 15)

Subs not used: Ma-Kalambay, Kashket, De Havilland, Thompson

Booked:

Attendance: 3956 (Inc, 336, away)


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