Cheltenham Town 4 Wycombe Wanderers 0
Cheltenham Town gave their supporters a belated and very welcome Christmas present by taking apart Wycombe Wanderers to reignite their promotion push at the Abbey Business Stadium this afternoon.
First half strikes from Jake Taylor and Jeff Goulding were followed by Darryl Duffy and Jermaine McGlashan goals after the break as they extended their unbeaten home run to nine League Two matches.
Whatever Mark Yates said to his team in the wake of last Friday’s 4-1 defeat at Rochdale seemed to have the desired effect as they came out fired up and determined to put things right from the first whistle.
Russ Penn switched from the right of midfield into the centre with Darren Carter and he was the driving force behind an impressive first half performance from Cheltenham.
Marlon Pack dropped out of the side along with fellow ex-Wycombe man Chris Zebroski and Shaun Harrad, with Goulding and Darryl Duffy paired together in attack.
Penn set the tone with a brave and well-timed challenge in the 11th minute which set up Taylor for a chance which he hit at Jordan Archer.
The on-loan goalkeeper from Tottenham allowed it to slip under his body, but he recovered to gather at the second attempt.
Cheltenham passed the ball around well, but it was not until the 29th minute that they found a breakthrough.
Taylor and Jermaine McGlashan swapped flanks and it proved to be an astute decision by Yates.
Cheltenham’s best crosser of the ball this season Billy Jones had not found his range so big centre-half Steve Elliott took on the mantle.
His ball over from the left was acrobatically cleared by Sam Wood, but Sido Jombati’s cushioned header found Taylor and he cracked a fine swerving shot inside Archer’s near post from just outside the penalty area.
Cheltenham regained possession straight from the restart and camped themselves around the Wycombe penalty area.
It was therefore no surprise when the second goal arrived three minutes later.
Jombati’s perfect cross from the right reached Goulding, who headed it across Archer and into the bottom right corner from eight yards.
It was Goulding’s third goal of the campaign and he linked up well with Duffy, causing real problems for the Chairboys backline.
Duffy clipped the top of the bar with a delicate chip in the 35th minute and he also forced Archer into a smart save before the break.
Wycombe’s 39-year-old player manager Gareth Ainsworth has been a major handful for Cheltenham over the years and most of their best moments stemmed from his play on the right wing.
Goulding was involved in Cheltenham’s third in the 54th minute, freeing Taylor on the left and he delivered another excellent cross to the far post, where Duffy was waiting to nod in his third of the campaign.
Brimming with confidence, Reading loan youngster Taylor cut inside from the left and forced Archer into a fingertip save in the 57th minute.
Archer distinguished himself again a minute later, touching Carter’s beautifully controlled volley over the bar as a predominantly young Wycombe side were pulled all over the pitch by rampant Cheltenham.
Carter bamboozled a defender, making enough room to send over a low ball which McGlashan touched in from almost on the line in the 70th minute to round off the most straightforward victory Cheltenham have enjoyed this season.
CHELTENHAM TOWN: S Brown; S Jombati (K Lowe 62), A Bennett, S Elliott, B Jones; J McGlashan (K Mohamed 77), R Penn (L D’Ath 70), D Carter, J Taylor; D Duffy, J Goulding. Subs not used: C Roberts, M Pack, S Harrad, C Zebroski.
WYCOMBE WANDERERS: J Archer; M McCoy, C Dunne (A Stewart 46), K House, S Wood; G Ainsworth, S Lewis, J Scowen (G Ehui 46), B Andrade; J Kuffour, D Oli (J Morias 64). Subs not used: L Harrison, L Angol, M Kretzschmar, E Ighorae.
REFEREE: S Rushton.
ATTENDANCE: 3,501 (506 from Wycombe)
STAR MAN: Jake Taylor.
Join Jon Palmer from 1.45pm for chat and updates from the Boxing Day clash betweeen the Robins and the Chairboys at the Abbey Business Stadium (3pm kick off):