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Kick off 12:30 (UK)

1-3
01 December 2018 Venue The MBi Shay Stadium Attendance

Kick off 12:30 (UK)

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Match Previews

Preview: An FA Cup battle between two clubs with unique stories

Quotes from both camps and a focus on FC Halifax

30 November 2018

AFC Wimbledon will on Saturday come up against another club that has battled through real adversity with FC Halifax providing the opposition in front of a national TV audience.

Pitched in the media as a 'cup battle between two phoenix clubs', The Dons will be aiming to negotiate what's likely to be a stern challenge from Halifax, a club that reformed six years after AFC Wimbledon.

Following victory in front of the TV cameras at Haringey in the last round of the Emirates FA Cup, the Dons will once again be on the telly with coverage on BT Sport One (12.30 pm kick-off).

History between the two clubs goes back a long way with Halifax Town as the opponents on 20 August 1977 when Wimbledon FC's Football League adventure started at Plough Lane.

AFC Wimbledon's Interim Manager Simon Bassey is too young to remember that match, but he's fully aware of the history of this fixture. And with plenty of AFC Wimbledon supporters making early morning starts on Saturday – three supporters' coaches are booked for the trip – Simon is eager to reward them with a victory in West Yorkshire that will put Wimbledon into the third round.

Below are quotes from both camps, plus stats, and facts about FC Halifax.

Simon Bassey

"So much has happened in Wimbledon's history since then (1977). We've had the highs of the FA Cup especially, but also the lows of what happened to this club and how it had to come back from that. To be facing Halifax again 41 years on is brilliant. I am really looking forward to it.

"The second round is a massive game for everyone, you are one game away from a dream tie for some. Financially for the club it is beneficial and free travel for the club is fantastic. I know it's a difficult start time for the fans because of TV coverage and I appreciate every one of the fans for their support. I thought they were excellent at Peterborough the other night and I know they will give the boys all the support that they can and we will try to give them something to be happy about.

"The FA Cup games always have a special feeling to them, they seem to bring the crowds out a bit more. I have fantastic memories of the FA Cup. Obviously, 1988 was the pinnacle, but you can also go back to the last few years and we've had good cup runs and played some big teams as AFC Wimbledon, so it's important for the club. It's a really good chance to put ourselves on the national stage again in terms of the coverage, so I'm really looking forward to it.

"All we can do is keeping working hard, keep trying to improve performances, and hopefully results will follow off the back of that. We have an FA Cup game coming up, knockout football, and we are really looking forward to it. We expect a tough game, but it's certainly one that we go into in good shape.

"We expect a good atmosphere and we certainly expect a tough game. I've watched three or four of their games and I've spoken to Jim Bentley (Morecambe manager) about them. They are a big side, well organised, hard-working, so we will touch upon all the things we know about them again in training tomorrow and we will be fully prepared for the game."

Jamie Fullarton

"I tell you what we can most learn from Wimbledon: how to win promotion four or five times. What they have done is remarkable. We've made great strides. The next stage is the difficulty of getting out of the National League. But because it is so hard, when teams do go up they more than hold their own. Look at Wimbledon, they rose very quickly. That's what I admire.

"The old adage of they won't fancy it, coming here to a non-league side, I don't buy that. Not least because they've already been to a non-league club [Haringey Borough] and won this season. They know what they're doing. They've been at this level recently, there's enough people involved there who fully understand and appreciate the strengths of this level."

Facts about FC Halifax

  • Halifax Town was founded in 1911, but it was liquidated in May 2008, and the club was subsequently reformed as FC Halifax Town in time for the 2008/09 season.
  • The club started again in Northern Premier League Division One North and has achieved three promotions since, most recently in 2013 when Halifax returned after a five-year absence to the fifth tier of English football (now the National League).
  • England striker Jamie Vardy had a spell with FC Halifax, helping the Shaymen to the Northern Premier League title and promotion to what is now National League North in 2011. Five years later Vardy famously helped Leicester City win the Premier League title.
  • FC Halifax play their home games at the redeveloped MBi Shay Stadium, a facility shared with Halifax Rugby League club, and it has a capacity of 14,000.
  • Former St Mirren, Crystal Palace, and Brentford midfielder Jamie Fullarton is the manager of FC Halifax. Fullarton, who was briefly in charge of Notts County in 2016, took over in February 2018 after the departure of Billy Heath.
  • FC Halifax will be bidding for a place in the third round of the FA Cup for the first time since the club was reformed. Morecambe were the first league club to be defeated by FC Halifax since its reformation, thanks to a goal from Cameron King, in a replay that set up a meeting with Wimbledon.

Form Guide (last six in all competitions, starting with most recent)

FC Halifax LWWDLD
AFC Wimbledon LWLWWL

Last time out

Ebbsfleet United 4-0 FC Halifax
Peterborough United 1-0 AFC Wimbledon

Blast from the past

On 20 August 1977, Halifax Town were the visitors to Plough Lane for Wimbledon's first Football League match. It was a cracking game that marked the club's move into the big time with 4,616 spectators watching an entertaining 3-3 draw. Jeff Bryant, John Leslie, and Roger Connell struck the goals for Wimbledon.

Tickets

Dons fans will be located in the East Stand (Block A) at the MBi Shay Stadium. Please note that it is cash only with entry via turnstiles 14 to 17 inclusive.

Admission prices are as follows:

  • Adults £15
  • Concessions (65 and over) £12
  • Under-18s £5
  • Under-12s free of charge
  • Disabled supporters pay as per their relevant age category. A carer, if required, is admitted free of charge.

Match commentary

Our WDON team will be providing live coverage from FC Halifax. This will be available by accessing our iFollow channel.

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Match Reports

Dons pass tough test at Halifax to earn third round place

Purrington's first Wimbledon goal leads the way to victory

1 December 2018

AFC Wimbledon came through a very testing first-half at FC Halifax to secure a place in the third round of the Emirates FA Cup.

The Dons won it 3-1 with goals from Ben Purrington, Anthony Wordsworth, and Joe Pigott, but the National League club provided a difficult challenge in the first-half. The two-division gap eventually told though and an improved second-half showing from Wimbledon rewarded the 314 travelling fans that made the long trip to West Yorkshire. Interim Manager Simon Bassey got his team working completely differently after the break with the Dons playing good football on a difficult pitch.

Simon Bassey made two changes from the side selected to start at Peterborough. Andy Barcham missed out due to injury and Liam Trotter had to settle for a place on the bench with Jake Jervis and Anthony Hartigan both recalled. The Dons were up against a Halifax side aiming for another league scalp after beating Morecambe at home in the last round.

Wimbledon were put on the back foot right from the outset and Joe McDonnell was called into action less than two minutes in when a cross from Jordan Preston was deflected into his arms. The hosts managed to put plenty of early pressure on by winning free-kicks in dangerous positions and the Dons were fortunate to survive in the ninth minute when Dayle Southwell's goal-bound effort was deflected wide. There was chaos in the Wimbledon box a few minutes later from a corner with the hosts putting McDonnell under pressure and his weak punch should really have been capitalised on. Fortunately, Josh Staunton scooped over the crossbar and Wimbledon were still level.

Halifax came so close to taking the lead in the 19th minute, as Wimbledon were almost punished for getting caught on the break. Matty Kosylo produced a brilliant run from his own half to go clean though and the opening goal appeared to be inevitable, but his shot struck the inside of a post and bounced to safety. It was a big relief for Wimbledon, but the match continued in the same pattern with Halifax dominating. Preston put in another teasing free-kick that Matty Brown reached first, but his header did not have enough on it.

By the half hour mark, Wimbledon had yet to fashion a chance worthy of note, but the Dons at least started to get on the ball and a first chance for the visitors came in the 32nd minute. Joe Pigott showed good awareness to set-up Mitch Pinnock and his powerful shot was well saved by Sam Johnson. At the other end, Wimbledon needed McDonnell to react well to save Cameron King's shot, before the same player's follow-up was blocked by Will Nightingale. The defending had been desperate at times as Wimbledon clung on to stay level, but it was 1-0 to the Dons in the 42nd minute. Pinnock swung in a cross from the right and though Jake Jervis completely missed it, the ball fell for Purrington, who struck a powerful effort that was deflected in.

The half ended with Wimbledon under pressure and Matty Brown headed off target from close range, but Halifax appeals for a penalty fell on deaf ears. The half-time shrilled with Wimbledon fortunate to be in front, but the Dons had shown gradual improvement during the first-half.

Wimbledon started the second-half with plenty of possession and certainly showing more encouraging signs of mastering a pitch that had become very heavy due to the incessant rain. Certainly, Wimbledon started to dominate, playing some good football in the process, and the chances started to come. Pinnock volleyed wide of the near post after showing good initial control, before the same player blasted over the crossbar with another fine effort. As Wimbledon continued the momentum, Halifax retreated deeper and deeper. Jervis threatened a second goal with a fine effort that was blocked.

The second goal did arrive in the 72nd minute and it was a fine goal too. Oshilaja found Anthony Wordsworth in space just outside the box and he let fly with a rocket of a shot that arrowed into the top corner, leaving Johnson with no chance. Far from settling for just the two, Wimbledon poured forward and a third goal arrived less than two minutes later. Pigott showed fine awareness in the box to steer the ball home from close-range, ending a goal drought after his superb early season form.

That was effectively it and game over now, the two-division gap eventually proving the difference. Wimbledon had shown good character to emerge triumphant after a very testing first-half. Halifax certainly deserved a goal for their efforts, but Mekhi McLeod shot into the side netting. However, the hosts did have a goal to celebrate when a cross was deflected in by Wimbledon substitute James Hanson. The Dons had done enough though and now we can all look forward to being in the hat for the Emirates FA Cup third round on Monday night.

AFC Wimbledon: Joe McDonnell, Ben Purrington, Deji Oshilaja, Will Nightingale, Anthony Hartigan, Jake Jervis (James Hanson), Mitch Pinnock, Tom Soares (Liam Trotter), Rod McDonald, Joe Pigott, Anthony Wordsworth (Scott Wagstaff).

Pic credit: Malcolm Bryce, Pro Sports Images.

 

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Ticket News

Match details for FA Cup tie at FC Halifax

Arrangements for tickets, parking, and other information

30 November 2018

AFC Wimbledon supporters can pay at the turnstiles for the Emirates FA Cup tie at FC Halifax on Saturday (12.30 pm kick-off).

Dons fans will be located in the East Stand (Block A) at the MBi Shay Stadium. Please note that it is cash only with entry via turnstiles 14 to 17 inclusive.

Admission prices are as follows:

Adults £15

Concessions (65 and over) £12

Under-18s £5

Under-12s free of charge

Disabled supporters pay as per their relevant age category. A carer, if required, is admitted free of charge.

Parking

FC Halifax have hired a multi-storey car park close to the ground for supporters to use. It is on Hungar Hill and it will be open from 10.30 am until 4.30 pm. The cost is £5.

Bars

Dons fans will be welcome to enjoy a drink in the supporters’ bar, which can be entered from the East Stand car park.

Supporters’ Coach

As we previously announced, the club will be putting on free coach for fans to get to the game. Three supporters’ coaches will pick-up from opposite South Wimbledon tube station (5.30 am) and from the Cherry Red Records Stadium (6.00 am). We still have availability and you can reserve a place by contacting 020 8547 3528 today.

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