Tag Archives: Millwall

Bean a long time…

It’s getting closer, the excitement is building and I for one cannot wait.

No, I’m not talking about Christmas, I’m referring to Marcus Bean’s first goal for Wycombe Wanderers.

If you go along to most of the games or tune into the commentaries, you cannot have failed to notice that the combative midfielder has been notching up the efforts on goal this season.

After 81 appearances so far for the Chairboys, Beany is overdue a goal and I think it will be a just reward for his excellent form this season so far.

However, he is not here to put the ball in the back of the net. Protecting the back four, breaking up play and turning possession over is a vital cog in any team.

Of course, the whole team defend as a unit but the statistics this season spell out that when Marcus Bean plays in the EFL, Wycombe normally concede fewer goals than when he doesn’t.

Claude Makele made this role fashionable and was so good at it, the position took his name. 

I checked out his statistics for his time at Chelsea and found that Makele scored only twice in 191 appearances for The Blues.

Steffen Freund was the hugely popular midfield enforcer at Tottenham and never scored for them.

Every time he got the ball in the opposition half, most of White Hart Lane screamed for him to shoot.

I’ve noticed that this has started happening to Beany with the excellent Chairboys away following.

At Solihull recently, the cries of “shoooooot” were distinctly audible and nearly paid off: Bean found a yard in the penalty area, only to shoot narrowly past the post.

As a commentator, I’m feeling the pressure of this situation. When the goal comes (not if, when), I have to make sure that I somehow find the words to do the moment justice.

Perhaps I’ll go full Icelandic commentator? Or maybe I should just follow the example of Beany himself…


I’ve now had the pleasure of Marcus’ company a few times in the commentary box, on the odd occasion of him being injured or suspended, but the first time remains the most memorable for me.

It was an FA Cup tie at Millwall and the Match Of The Day editor had sent me a text in the morning explaining that if Wycombe pulled off an upset and won, they would use my goal commentary on that evening’s programme.

“Wow”, I thought to myself. I’d only been doing this commentary lark for five minutes and I might get on MOTD?!

Wycombe duly obliged with an injury time winner from Michael Harriman, and I floated out of The New Den after the game.

I soon crashed back down to earth on the platform at Bermondsey station.

A text message arrived from MOTD: “Who was your summariser today?

“He’s screamed YEEEAAAAHHH right across your commentary and it’s unusable, we’ll have to use the BBC London one instead.”

Denied a moment of glory by Marcus Bean.

Now I know what it must feel like to play against him on a Saturday.

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Millwall 1 Wycombe Wanderers 0

Going into last nights game without a League Cup win (over 90 minutes) since the quarter final victory over Charlton Athletic in 2006, Wycombe looked to have their work cut out against ‘Championship’ Millwall.  However, despite the narrow defeat there were many positives to take from the performance and a chance at the lottery of extra time and penalties would not have flattered The Chairboys.  

Millwall stalwarts Alan Dunne and David Forde had to be at their best to keep Wycombe at bay but even against ten men for the final thirty minutes the decisive cutting edge wasn’t there. The performance of Sido Jombati was the highlight, making several important tackles and always willing to get forward, he looks to be an excellent signing already.  Jacobson and Murphy continue to grow into their roles well whilst Paul Hayes again showed some good touches.  The first sighting of Aaron Holloway in a Wycombe shirt was also a plus point with the young Welshman a real nuisance after his introduction in the second half.  

After reading the excellent Family: Life, Death and Football by Michael Calvin, I was really looking forward to my first visit to The New Den and I wasn’t disappointed.  It’s a great club and in Ian Holloway I think they have the right man in charge, it was also admirable to see six of their academy graduates on the bench.  

Here is my brief match report for BBC Three Counties closely followed by the post match thoughts of Gareth Ainsworth


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