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Wycombe boss Matt Bloomfield claims Sam Vokes was denied penalty due to his size

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 24 Feb 2024

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WMatt Bloomfield claimed Sam Vokes was picked on for his size after a penalty decision went against the former Wales striker in Wycombe’s 1-0 defeat at Stevenage.

Bloomfield had no complaints with the red card shown to goalkeeper Max Stryjek, which gave his side an even bigger mountain to climb after Carl Piergianni had put Stevenage ahead.

But the Chairboys appeared to have a case for a penalty after Vokes was seemingly wrestled to the ground by Dan Sweeney as the hosts nervously closed out their first win in five games to reignite their play-off push.

Bloomfield said: “I’m told it’s because of his size by the referee, so I’m not sure why he has different rules against him than other players.

“Apparently, he’s big enough to look after himself, but I’m baffled by that if I’m honest.”

He said on Stryjek’s dismissal: “It was just a ball over the top and we’ve got to defend that situation better.

“We’ve got to defend that better with the back four, but also Maxy comes rushing out.

“With 11 men, we’re confident we can go on and win the game, obviously it’s a lot harder with 10, but we still made an absolute fist of it and we could have walked out here with something.

“It’s disappointing because of the way we started the game – I thought for 20 minutes we were excellent, we hit the bar and had numerous opportunities.”

It was Richard Kone who struck the bar with a mishit shot for Wycombe, who rued that miss when Piergianni found the bottom corner from Sweeney’s lay-off halfway through the first half.

Stryjek made a good save to deny Jake Forster-Caskey before half-time, but saw red three minutes after the restart for a professional foul on Jordan Roberts outside his area.

His replacement Franco Ravizzoli fumbled Piergianni’s header against the post before Wycombe’s Matt Butcher curled an effort narrowly wide in stoppage time.

Stevenage boss Steve Evans said: “We were so far on top then we missed a couple chances – three chances in fact – to go and wrap it up.

“And then the last few minutes were a little bit nervy, but it’s going to be nervy with them just throwing caution to the wind and putting long balls into the box, and they’ve got some real quality players.

“I’ve said to the players we have to, and we will, play a lot better. But here it was for three weeks in a row where I’ve said we’ve played well and we’d lost.

“So, we’ve won a game and I think if you look at it over the 90 minutes, we deserved to win the game, but we’ll play a lot better.”

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