Wycombe v Notts... BIG match preview

By Paul Smith
Last updated : 04 October 2007

Notts will be aiming to put their disappointing 3-2 midweek defeat to Hereford United firmly behind them as they travel south to face perennial under achievers Wycombe Wanderers.

The game at Adams Park features two sides firmly expected to be amongst the promotion race come the end of the season, but neither side have as yet gathered much pace.

Adams Park from a distance

It is clearly a vital game for both given previous inconsistencies, and trying not to lose will be foremost in both teams game plans.

Being the home side Wycombe are likely to come out more, so a solid defensive display is required from Notts to stand any kind of chance.

Even at this early stage a Magpies win will have them ease into the top half while defeat could see them sink below twentieth.

Team news

Easter... Not in action
Notts
- Myles Weston is fit enough for a first team place but still might not be risked by Notts boss Steve Thompson. Jay Smith remains a doubt with his groin injur but could have a fitness test. Hector Sam and Gary Silk are pushing for a recall after good showings from the bench on Tuesday. Micheal Byron and Mike Edwards remain sidelined.

Wycombe - Deadly marksman Jermaine Easter will not figure after allegedly declaring he didn't want to play for the club. Long term injury victim Mike Williamson remains sidelined until the New Year while key defender Will Antwi is still a bit away from a first team recall. Goalkeeper Jamie Young is out, while former Magpie Chris Palmer is on load with Darlington. Despite defeat at Barnet in midweek Paul Lambert is expected to name an unchanged side.

Form guide

Notts - Notts' current sequence clearly illustrates their frustrating inconsistency with their last six league games heralding a drew, lost, won, drew, won, lost sequence. It leaves the Magpies in fifteenth place in League Two. Yet to record a win away from home, only three points from twelve have been picked up on their travels.

Wycombe - After a stuttering start the Chairboys looked to be on their way to a fine run of form with three wins and a draw as they visited Underhill on Tuesday, but Barnet stole all three points with a 2-1 success. Now it is vital Lambert's men regather their form, particularly at the back where they conceded just twice in four games. At home it is seven points from twelve.

The view

Notts - Defender Gary Silk is eyeing a return to the starting eleven on

Silk celebrating his goal with Somner
Saturday. He told Magpie World: "Of course I want to be back in the team, but that is down to the gaffer and not me, and I will just have to wait and see now for Saturday. It is frustrating not playing, but all I can keep doing is trying my best and when I get a chance like on Tuesday try and take it."

Wycombe - Boss Paul Lambert told Wanderers World: "This is a very competitive division. Just look at the division - there are only six points separating the top ten teams and we are right in the mix."

Key men

Notts - Adam Tann is in the form of his Notts career and is looking every inch the player League One high flyers Leyton Orient were desperate to keep in the summer. His determination, flourishing understanding with centre-back partner Stephen Hunt and vital last ditch challenges make him vital to Notts' hopes

McGleish... Top striker at this level
of an important clean sheet. With Wanderers having some talented strikers in their ranks Tann must be at his best, and if he concentrates he can help keep even the best in the league out.

Wycombe - In the absence of Easter Scott McGleish has to step up to the plate as the feared lower league goalscorer he became at Northampton Town where he regularly hit the net - and against Notts too. He is the Chairboys leading scorer so far with three goals and his deadly in and around the box given any space at all. That is the key for Notts, denying the poacher the space he craves on because with it he will surely net.

Big battle

Gary Holt v Neil MacKenzie.

Against Hereford MacKenzie tried his best all night to drive Notts on and he looked the most likely avenue for a Notts goal. Everytime he gets the ball the fans sense something owing to his superb passing, vision and shooting skills. Holt, the former Forest man, is Wanderers' midfield destroyer and will be charged with halting MacKenzie's influence. If he does this it leaves Notts lacking their finest creative spark so it is vital MacKenzie is on form and gets away from Holt who will run himself into the ground for the cause.

Likely line-ups

Notts - Could see changes after Hereford loss. (4-3-3): Kevin Pilkington; Gary Silk, Adam Tann, Stephen Hunt, Paul Mayo; Richard Butcher, Matt Somner, Neil MacKenzie; Lawrie Dudfield, Jason Lee, Hector Sam.

Wycombe - Reports suggest they will be unchanged from Barnet defeat. (3-5-2): Frank Fielding; David McCracken, Sam Stockley, Leon Johnson; Gary Holt, Martin Bullock, Stefan Oakes, Russell Martin, Sergio Torres; Scott McGleish, John Sutton.

Prediction

Always a difficult place to go to and Notts can count Wanderers as a regular bogey team over the last decade. However neither side will want to lose first and foremost after midweek defeats so a low scoring draw is a good bet. 1-1.

Notts. County Match Reports

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