Ainsworth hopeful of writing a fairytale
WYCOMBE won’t give up on a fairytale play-off place according to manager Gareth Ainsworth, despite slipping to defeat to fellow promotion chasers Mansfield.
Krystian Pearce’s first-half goal settled this encounter at Adams Park and leaves Wycombe four points off the play-offs with four games remaining.
Just as crucially, they are down in 13th, but Ainsworth is confident his team can still achieve the unlikely and finish in the top seven.
He said: “There are some tough games coming up, and we need to really raise our game for Monday.
“I was really happy with the performance. I was buoyed by the atmosphere of the crowd, and we go and prepare for Monday.
“Who says we can't win all four? And if we do, we will be very close for the play-offs.
“Barnet is a big game on Monday, we’ve got to concentrate on getting that win. We have only lost one in eight, and we go there positively. Who knows? I am always open for a fairytale. I think we can win all four games.
“It would be immense to make the play-offs and we are doing all we can to do so. This club is now a solid outfit with a good structure, and without financial struggles. That is very positive.”
The Chairboys had their chances to get something out of this game, particularly in the second half, but they came up against a Mansfield keeper in inspired form.
Jake Kean was outstanding in keeping a clean sheet, with one save from Adebayo Akinfenwa particularly impressive, and puts the Stags just two points off the play-off spots.
And manager Steve Evans was quick to praise his keeper for his acrobatics in nullifying Wycombe.
He added: “It was a super save by Jake (Kean), probably one of the best live saves I’ve ever seen. Not many people stop Adebayo Akinfenwa scoring from that position. It was a truly fantastic save.
“It was two good teams out there, if anything we deserved to win the game, but two good teams were on show.
“It was always going to be tough, we changed our system to play against Akinfenwa, and we will change again on Monday (against Luton), although I’m not saying what we will change to.
“We'll get on the training ground and cool down, and train properly on Sunday to be ready to give ourselves a chance of closing the gap.
“Monday is the biggest game of the season, and before that this was the biggest.”