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Wycombe Wanderers 2, Southend United 1
5:00pm Saturday 31st August 2013 in Sport
SOUTHEND United’s inability to defend set pieces saw them suffer a 2-1 defeat at Wycombe Wanderers this afternoon.
Blues looked solid in open play but twice conceded from dead ball deliveries.
And, despite Freddy Eastwood bagging a fourth goal in four games, the Shrimpers slumped to their second successive 2-1 defeat.
Wycombe’s first goal came with seven minutes on the flock when Sam Wood’s right wing free-kick picked out Dean Morgan just eight yards out and the former Blues loanee send a downward header in to the bottom left hand corner of the net.
The manner of the goal would have infuriated Shrimpers boss Phil Brown whose side also conceded from a set piece at Chesterfield last Saturday.
But Blues were behind for just six minutes as Eastwood continued his fine scoring sequence to bring Blues level.
Ryan Leonard helped to make his latest effort as he charged in to the left hand side of the penalty area before delivering a low cross in to the path of the in form forward who fired a low, right footed shot in to the bottom right hand corner of the net from 12 yards.
The effort made it four goals in four successive games – his best scoring sequence in eight years – and also equalled his tally from the whole of last season.
However, the Shrimpers were unable to build on the equaliser and went behind for a second time, in the 32nd minute, with Wycombe scoring from another set piece.
This time a left wing corner from substitute Max Kretzschmar picked out Steven Craig and his near post header flew high in to the right hand side of the goal.
The effort angered Blues who felt certain the corner should not have been awarded in the first place but the Shrimpers almost levelled on the stroke of half-time when John White headed a right wing corner from Conor Clifford against the crossbar.
The visitors also came close to scoring right at the start of the second half when Ben Coker’s left win cross was met by Eastwood but his header was tipped around the right post by Chairboys goalkeeper Matt Ingram.
Moments later, Coker fired over after swapping passes with Anthony Straker down the left hand side before Blues boss Phil Brown made a double change in the 53rd minute as Craig Reid replaced Barry Corr in attack while Kevan Hurst took Clifford’s place in midfield.
The two subs soon combined with Hurst teeing up Reid for a right footed shot which deflected just wide of the right post but the Shrimpers then wasted a clearer chance to equaliser with Straker failing to convert from close range.
The Blues winger reacted sharply after Hurst’s right wing cross had caused problems in the Chairboys’ box but, after having his initial effort saved by Ingram, Straker slammed a six yard shot against the crossbar when he should have done better.
The Shrimpers then made their third and final change in the 82nd minute with Jack Payne coming on for Will Atkinson.
But it was Wycombe who came closest to scoring in the closing stages as Morgan fired against the crossbar from 12 yards.