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York City v Wycombe: Chairboys wobble at threat of losing main man
11:32am Friday 17th August 2012 in Sport
WYCOMBE Wanderers will need to continue resisting the advances of Preston North End if star striker Stuart Beavon is to feature in tomorrow’s League Two curtain-raiser at York City.
Former Weymouth striker Beavon netted 25 times last season despite the club suffering relegation from League One and the Deepdale outfit have already tabled a bid for his services believed to be in the region of £300,000.
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The 28-year-old hitman, who claimed four goals in pre-season, missed last Saturday’s 1-0 Capital One Cup defeat at Watford due to illness but has trained with the Chairboys this week and is expected to return to the starting line-up at Bootham Crescent unless he is sold today.
Beavon’s goals last season almost compensated for a defence that conceded more times than any other side in the country’s top four divisions.
Wanderers shipped 88 league goals, letting in four goals or more in a match seven times, including a 6-0 home thumping by Huddersfield.
The Buckinghamshire outfit’s goal tally of 65, however, was the eighth best in their division, despite finishing the campaign fourth bottom and seven points from safety.
Wycombe’s back-four worries are unlikely to be eased by the news that Antigua and Barbuda international Marvin McCoy will be sidelined for three months after fracturing his fibula bone and suffering ankle ligament damage at Watford, where former Minsterman Chris Iwelumo scored the only goal of the tie.
McCoy’s fellow right-back Danny Foster is also currently sidelined, along with a third defender Dave Winfied.
As a consequence, centre-half Anthony Stewart is expected to fill in at right-back, as he did at Watford, with Grant Basey set to line up alongside former Tottenham and Norwich campaigner Gary Doherty in the middle.
Stewart and left-back Charles Dunne, who is in line to make his full League debut against the Minstermen, are both teenagers.
Wycombe also have absentees in attack with Matt McClure and summer signing Dennis Oli nursing knee injuries.
Should Beavon play, he will partner former Exeter forward Richard Logan, who operated as a lone striker at Vicarage Road.
That could mean midfielder Stuart Lewis dropping to the bench.
Wycombe go into tomorrow’s match without a competitive win in almost five months.
Gary Waddock’s men have not tasted victory in nine League and cup fixtures since a 3-1 triumph at Exeter on March 20.
In pre-season, the Chairboys only managed wins against lower-league opponents Farnborough (2-1), Staines (2-1), Windsor (3-1), Cambridge United (3-2) and Hanwell (2-0).
There were also goal-less draws against Blue Square Bet Premier pair Forest Green and Luton, as well as defeats to Fulham (3-0), QPR (3-0), Wingate & Finchley (2-0) and Brentford (4-1).
The clash against City will be Wycombe’s first League encounter as a Supporters Trust-owned club following the fans’ takeover from Steve Hayes.
Summer signings Logan, Matthew Spring and Sam Wood are also set to make their League debuts.
Wycombe (probable): Bull, Stewart, Doherty, Basey, Dunn, Grant, Spring, Bloomfield, Wood, Logan, Beavon.
THE Chairboys have made five previous Football League visits, all of them in Division Two (League One).
They drew 0-0 on their first trip in 1994/5 only to lose their four subsequent matches at Bootham Crescent.
In 1995/6, City won 2-1 with Gary Bull (penalty) and Glenn Naylor on target.
The following season Nigel Pepper (pen) and Neil Tolson netted in a 2-0 success and it was the same scoreline in 1997/8 thanks to efforts from Tony Barras (pen) and Rodney Rowe.
The last game here between the clubs was on August 29, 1998, when City won 3-0 with goals from Neil Thompson (2) and Richard Cresswell. The line-up was: Mimms, McMillan, Hall, Tinkler (Reed), Jones, Thompson, Connelly (Jordan), Pouton, Cresswell, Woods (Tolson), Garratt. The attendance was 2,775.
One playing link is Viv Busby.
City last won at home on the opening day of a season in August 1999 when Swansea City were beaten 1-0.
The last Football League game staged at Bootham Crescent was on May 1, 2004, when Leyton Orient won 2-1. Stuart Wise was the scorer and the side was: Porter, Law, Wise, Wood, Merris (Davies), Arthur (Ashcroft), Brass, Dunning, Stewart, Yalcin, George (Bell).
It happened on August 18
1956: City lost a Division Three North encounter 3-0 at Accrington Stanley.
1962: Billy Rudd was the scorer in a 1-1 draw at Stockport County in Division Four.
1979: A 3-1 reverse at Hereford United on the opening day of this Fourth Division campaign with Kevin Randall the marksman.
1992: Paul Barnes scored on his debut in a 2-0 home win over Shrewsbury Town at the start of the promotion winning season in the Third Division (League Two). Ray Warburton was also on target in front of an attendance of 2,443.
Compiled by Dave Batters