The Dons slipped to their third successive home defeat this afternoon at the hands of League 2 high-flyers Accrington.
Wimbledon paid the price for failing to make the most of superior possession and chances as Simon Bassey suffered his first defeat as caretaker manager with a 2-1 home loss. Goals from Padraig Amond and Peter Murphy won it for the men from Lancashire with Sammy Moore’s late strike coming too late to save the Dons in injury-time.
Simon Bassey made just one enforced change from the side that started at Wycombe with Christian Jolley straight back in after his return from suspension.Wimbledon started in the same manner as they had at Adams Park by producing an opening full of attacking verve that put Accrington on the back foot from the start. Byron Harrison produced a smart turn and pass that gave Luke Moore a good shooting chance, but his shot was too close to Stanley goalkeeper Ian Dunbavin. Jolley then created an even better opportunity for himself in the 23rd minute when he accelerated past the challenges of Craig Lindfield and Peter Murphy, but his subsequent shot was just too high.
However, all that early pressure from the hosts counted for nothing a minute later when Accrington snatched the lead. Padraig Amond got behind a square Dons back-line to latch onto a through ball after Dale Bennett had deflected it into his path and the Accrington striker found the back of the net with a deft lob. With the men from Lancashire having already won at Southend and Cheltenham this season, it was always going to be tough for Wimbledon to turn it around after that. The Dons did respond though and another fine move ended with Rashid Yussuff setting up last week’s match-winner Sammy Moore for a pop at goal, but this time his well struck shot was turned away by Dunbavin at full stretch.
The Dons thought they were celebrating their first goal into the new North Stand in the 35th minute when Harrison got on the end of Dale Bennett flick after George Francomb’s free-kick, but the Wimbledon’s striker was ruled offside. The visitors almost grabbed what would have been an undeserved 2-0 lead in the 41st minute when Seb Brown got down well to turn away a curler from Amond and Will Hatfield fired wide from the rebound.
Wimbledon were fortunate not to be two down at the start of the second-half as they needed goalkeeper Seb Brown to deny Amond from close range after a goalmouth scramble. Harrison came close at the other end though when he reached a loose ball in the area first and shot just wide of the near post.
The hosts continued to enjoy the lion’s share of possession during the second-half, but the finishing touch continued to elude them. It should really have been level pegging when Byron Harrison headed on a Luke Moore cross for Jolley to get on the end of, but he headed over the crossbar from inside the six-yard box. However, the Dons were becoming increasingly frustrated against the resolute visitors as they struggled to create anything of note, though Jolley did test Dunbavin with a flying header. And the contest was effectively over 13 minutes from time when Peter Murphy was given too much space in the Wimbledon area from a Luke Joyce free-kick and he needed no second invitation to deliver a dipping volley that left Seb Brown with no chance.
Summer signing Curtis Osano made his debut 10 minutes from the end as a substitute for Dale Bennett, but it was a losing start to his Dons career despite a late rally from the Dons.Sammy Moore tapped home the easiest goal he will ever score after Dunbavin had misjudged a Francomb cross in injury-time. All of a sudden the visitors were rocking and the hosts had what appeared to be a decent shout for a penalty when Harrison was held back in the area. But it was not to be and Wimbledon will need to have more cutting edge in attack if they are to get anything from Tuesday night’s visit to Oxford United.
AFC Wimbledon: Seb Brown, George Francomb, Jim Fenlon (Warren Cummings), Sammy Moore, Dale Bennett (Curtis Osano), Will Antwi, Christian Jolley (Charlie Strutton), Steven Gregory, Byron Harrison, Rashid Yussuff, Luke Moore.