Can Tranmere put league disappointment behind them to make FA Cup progress?


It’s part three of the Tranmere v Wycombe trilogy on Wednesday evening when Micky Mellon’s side travel to Adams Park for the FA Cup First Round replay.

The original tie at Prenton Park ended in a closely-fought 2-2 draw, while on Sunday, in a League One fixture, Wanderers came out on top with a 2-0 win.

Both games, in fairness, have been relatively close games. Although Wycombe sit on the top of the table in League One, with Rovers down in 18th, there hasn’t been much between the two sides over the course of the two recent fixtures.

In general play, and removing my rose-tinted spectacles, there hasn’t been a glaring gap of quality between the two teams.

On Sunday, the difference was two poor errors by the Rovers rearguard to concede two goals. The marking from the free kick for the first was terrible, and then an experienced player like Darren Potter ought to know better than to get involved with grappling inside the penalty area for the second.

Adebayo Akinfenwa was rubbing his hands with glee when he found himself in so much space in the box and, as he has done throughout his long career, headed home with great precision past Scott Davies.

You cannot afford to give players those types of opportunities, and we were severely punished at the weekend for doing so. That needs to improve, for sure.

It may be a good thing that there is a game so soon after the disappointment of Sunday.

The players will be desperate to want to put things right, and with the Second Round draw already made and looking favourable, there is added incentive to go and win this cup tie.

A home match against the lowest-ranked side left in the competition is the reward for getting through. Plus the prize money, plus the added bonus of the game being live on TV, with the added profits it can earn for the club.

Cut out the silly errors, and we have a chance. But if we’re going to concede soft goals like we did at the weekend, the job will be so much harder. And against a side which is full of confidence, as Wycombe are at the moment, they won’t pass up on any opportunities falling their way.

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