19 August 2023

John Dreyer full of praise for Max Crocombe as Burton claim draw at Wycombe

19 August 2023

Burton assistant manager John Dreyer believes Max Crocombe staked a claim to become the club’s first-choice goalkeeper after a superb performance in their goalless draw at Wycombe.

Crocombe, a summer signing from Grimsby, made his first start for Burton having replaced the injured Jamal Blackman from the bench during Tuesday night’s defeat at Shrewsbury.

The 30-year-old New Zealander made a succession of fine saves at Adams Park to earn his team their first point of the season at the fourth attempt.

Dreyer, speaking to the media after Brewers boss Dino Maamria was sent off following the final whistle for dissent, said: “He was terrific, I think, in his all-round game.

“His kicking was very good, he commanded his box, he gathered crosses and free-kicks, he made an outstanding point-blank save – I think he was offside coming from the left-hand side but he was fantastic.

“He really staked a claim for that No 1 shirt.

“We had to keep to a game plan, we had to stay solid and we knew at some point there would be a chance there, we played a patient game and we had some chances.

“Kwadwo Baah came on and had a couple of good touches and a really good chance fell to the skipper (John Brayford) late on that probably fell to his wrong foot but we still had chance among that solid team performance.”

Crocombe’s first chance to shine came after 16 minutes when he did brilliantly to tip away a stunning Sam Vokes volley that looked to have beaten him.

Wycombe stopper Max Stryjek then had to deny Mason Bennett an opening goal for Burton early in the second half before Crocombe thwarted the hosts again by saving well from Dale Taylor.

He then stood strong to keep out an admittedly offside Brandon Hanlan’s close-range effort before Brayford almost snatched it for the Brewers in stoppage time when he shot just wide.

Wycombe boss Matt Bloomfield said: “I felt like in the first half we were obviously the team in the ascendency.

“We were playing the game we wanted to; we wanted to take the game to Burton and hit them early and I felt like we did that in the first half.

“Obviously, no two halves are ever the same and the game changed a bit second half – it was very disjointed in terms of all the breakages in play, which are supposedly getting cut out but obviously weren’t this afternoon.

“All the stoppages and waiting for long throws, and all the rest of it, but we have to be respectful of the point, we’re pleased with the point and we’re still growing and learning as a group.

“We missed a lot of pre-season so we’re still getting the group together.”

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