Morecambe 3 Wycombe Wanderers 2: Shrimps battle back to defeat promotion hopefuls

Morecambe defied the formbook by twice overturning a deficit to claim three points against a promotion-chasing Wycombe side.

By Gavin Browne
Saturday, 22nd January 2022, 5:01 pm
Updated Saturday, 22nd January 2022, 5:20 pm

Stephen Robinson’s players twice trailed to goals from Adebayo Akinfenwa and Jack Grimmer at the Mazuma Stadium.

However, Anthony O’Connor, Jonah Ayunga and Cole Stockton all found the net as the Shrimps made it six points from the last nine on home soil.

Morecambe made one change from the side beaten by Wigan Athletic in midweek.

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In came Ryan Cooney with the unwell Ryan McLaughlin the man to make way.

The Shrimps had started on the front foot, only to fall behind with 93 seconds gone in a manner Robinson had pinpointed before the match.

Having spoken about Wycombe’s crossing ability, the Morecambe boss saw Jordan Obita advance down the left and cross for Akinfenwa, who powered a header beyond Trevor Carson.

Heads didn’t drop despite such a disappointing start with Ayunga looking especially bright in the early stages.

He saw one fierce effort deflected behind after Wycombe keeper David Stockdale had kept out Arthur Gnahoua’s shot.

Another, slightly more optimistic, shot flashed wide as the Shrimps refused to be overawed by their visitors.

Nevertheless, Akinfenwa’s aerial ability and Gareth McLeary’s runs from midfield meant the home defence could not afford to switch off.

McLeary twice fired off target after running at the Morecambe backline, while Brandon Hanlan fired into the travelling fans from a tight angle.

Then, with half-time six minutes away, the Shrimps got on level terms when O’Connor met Aaron Wildig’s corner to net his fourth of the season.

The second half was just as competitive with both sides continuing to battle..

Morecambe were first to show with Shane McLoughlin firing over from the edge of the area, though the Shrimps were grateful to Jacob Bedeau seconds later when he blocked Hanlan’s effort.

However, they fell behind again on 54 minutes after Greg Leigh was deemed to have used a raised foot when challenging Grimmer.

The free-kick was sent forward and eventually dropped to Grimmer, who volleyed past Carson via the upright.

Back came the Shrimps with Stockdale pushing away Gnahoua’s free-kick before they drew level on the hour.

Gnahoua slipped the ball to Stockton, whose effort from distance was fumbled by the keeper and Ayunga tucked away the loose ball.

Seven minutes later, they took the lead when Ayunga received possession from Wildig and clipped a delightful ball over the top for Stockton to volley home.

Bedeau blocked another Hanlan shot, though the Shrimps could have scored again when Ayunga found Gnahoua.

His first touch, however, took him wider than intended and his shot flew off target.

At the other end, Akinfenwa saw a header easily held by Carson but, despite six minutes of added time, Morecambe were able to see the game out for three points.

Morecambe: Carson, Cooney, O’Connor, Bedeau, Leigh, Wildig (Fane 81), McLoughlin, Diagouraga, Gnahoua, Stockton (Duffus 90), Ayunga. Subs not used: Letheren, McDonald, Phillips, Gibson, McCalmont.

Wycombe Wanderers: Stockdale, Stewart, Tafazolli, Jacobson (De Barr 87), Grimmer, Thompson (Horgan 75), Mehmeti (Wheeler 65), Obita, McLeary, Akinfenwa, Hanlan. Subs not used: Przybek, McCarthy, Pendlebury, Forino.

Referee: Ben Toner.

Attendance: 3,865.

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