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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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15 January 2022 Venue The Cherry Red Records Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

Midfield ace Anthony expected to miss Morecambe clash

Wimbledon to check on the ankle of new loan striker

14 January 2022

Midfielder Anthony Hartigan is likely to be ruled out of Saturday's home game against Morecambe, having been in hospital for tests.

“He had really bad stomach pains after the game in midweek,” said Head Coach Mark Robinson. “We’re investigating what it could be, but there’s a few things that have been ruled out already. We’re hoping it’s nothing serious. At the moment we’re thinking it could be from exertion because his stats for the night were off the scale in terms of the ground he covered!

“It probably does rule him out of the Morecambe game. Even if it’s not anything serious, he’s been in hospital having tests. He hasn’t done a lot of preparation and he was in a lot of pain, so we’re just waiting to hear back, but he was absolutely outstanding in midweek.

“The big thing with Anthony is that we hope he’s healthy, but when something like this happens it opens up an opportunity for someone else who possibly hasn’t had the game time he’d hoped for. That’s for a reason, because Woody and Ant have been as good as any midfield two in the league and their stats back that up. George Marsh should be hungry to start, but we’ll see what happens come Saturday.”

Physio Tim Maynard will keep tabs on loan signing Terry Ablade in the build-up to kick-off, after he took a knock to an ankle, but it isn’t expected to stop the Fulham striker from being a part of the matchday squad.

Both sides come off the back of defeats going into our first home league game for almost fifty days back at The Cherry Red Records Stadium. Morecambe put up a gallant display, having taken the lead at Tottenham Hotspur in the FA Cup last Sunday, only to eventually bow out 3-1.

Goals from Anthony Hartigan, Ethan Chislett, Will Nightingale and a dramatic winner from Ayoub Assal sealed a thrilling 4-3 victory for us at Morecambe in September. Danger man Cole Stockton netted twice that day for the hosts and the striker is their top scorer, with 18 goals so far in this campaign. Saturday could also mark the return to Wimbledon of Shane McLoughlin, who scored against us in that corresponding fixture.

“I’m sure it will be a really good game,” said Robbo. “They’re full of energy. There have been lots of exciting games, but that one was unbelievable! When we went to get back on the coach, some of their fans were waiting for autographs and thought we were the best side they’d had at their place.

“That’s what we are like at our best, but you have to remember what your best is like. I’m fully expecting an exciting game, but I’d like it to be a bit more comfortable, obviously!

“I left the boys alone on Thursday to prepare for Morecambe. When I went in, they were busy having a meeting. There were a few disagreements, which I think is good as you need honesty. Then we went on to have a positive meeting moving forward. A lot of that was around people thinking things are broken when they are not and its my job to realign them and make sure we’re ready for Saturday, which we are.”

You can see the full preview to the visit of Morecambe with our Head Coach Mark Robinson below, via the link below to our official YouTube channel.

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Match Reports

Dons denied victory after much-improved second-half display

A 0-0 draw at the Cherry Red Records Stadium

15 January 2022

AFC Wimbledon had to settle for a point after a pulsating second half when Robbo's team pressed hard for a deserved winner.

The Dons gave it everything after the break but just couldn’t carve a way through despite Assal hitting the bar with a fierce cross-come-shot from the left. Although it wasn’t the win we all wanted there were clear signs that the players were regaining the momentum that had dominated the performances in December at Accrington and Wycombe.

Wimbledon's players certainly showed that they had shaken off the signs of rustiness that had slightly plagued their last three performances and were unlucky not to leave this match with all three points as they pushed hard for a winner in the closing stages.

The slick passing and drive that was on display certainly bodes well for the future and with a welcome clean sheet being kept to boot, it was a performance that could potentially offer a solid foundation for the Dons to return to form with a gruelling schedule of games coming up.

Alas there were no goals to cheer for the expectant home faithful, but many fans will have come away from the match thinking that they had just seen a glimpse of what everyone knows this young Wimbledon side is capable of.

A frustrating afternoon maybe but definitely one which will have increased spirits rather than dampening them. Ollie Palmer and Ayoub Assal came the closest for the hosts throughout the 90 minutes, but the pressure ultimately failed to pay off as the visiting Shrimps clung on for a point when they really deserved to walk away empty handed.

Mark Robinson made two changes to the side which lost on Tuesday, with George Marsh and Paul Osew coming in for Anthony Hartigan and Nesta Guinness-Walker, who were both missing through injury and suspension respectively. Meanwhile, new signing Terry Ablade returned to the bench.

For the visitors, former Dons Shane McLoughlin and Ryan Delaney were named in their squad for this highly anticipated clash. Some 42 days had passed since the Dons had last taken to the hallowed turf at the Cherry Red Records Stadium and there was certainly a sense of expectation which swept through the stands as fans both young and old took their seats. That enthusiasm clearly transferred to the men on the pitch with Paul Osew being the first to tear down the left before his flighted cross was headed high and wide by Jack Rudoni as Wimbledon started the game in energetic fashion.

The home side’s tails were up, and they were certainly getting some joy down the left, with Marsh this time firing in a cross which forced a Morecambe man to put the ball in behind for a corner.

Morecambe were certainly the side on the back foot during the opening 15 minutes, with the Dons’ high pressing game causing all kinds of chaos along the backline for the away side, often forcing them to go long as opposed to looking to play out from the back. However, the Dons had to stay on their toes, particularly with the Shrimps possessing players within their ranks who could make a difference against the run of play. Shane McLoughlin was the first to fire in a warning shot against his former club during a rare foray forward, his shot flashing into the side netting.

The visitors slowly began to grow into the game, and it was their dangerman Cole Stockton who was next to threaten as a lofted ball set him away clear on the Dons goal before Ben Heneghan crashed in with a brilliant sliding challenge to divert the ball away from the in-form marksman. As the first 45 minutes wore on, it was Wimbledon who continued to enjoy the majority of the possession against a slightly passive Morecambe side, but there was no sign of any real clear-cut chances being created. It was a game that was finely balanced heading into half time, and one that was quite clearly there for the taking for whoever blinked first.

Robbo’s boys were caught slightly cold in the first few minutes of the second half, with Stockton again wriggling into room before firing a warning shot over the crossbar from just outside the area. This clearly gave the Dons the wake-up call needed, and we soon tested Trevor Carson in the Morecambe goal for the first time as Marsh’s dipping volley forced the shot-stopper to fumble the ball behind.

Wimbledon were starting to bang on the door in front of a typically vocal home crowd and it was Palmer who came even closer, Will Nightingale’s deft nod on from a Luke McCormick corner allowing the striker to powerfully head towards the net. However, Carson made a superb save to deny the number nine.

A total of 7128 supporters were packed into the Cherry Red Records Stadium, the familiar chants of ‘allez, allez, allez’ urging the yellow and blue bodies forward in unison as a breakthrough was sought. Palmer was next to threaten again in front of the South London Movers Stand as the ball broke to him on the left side of the box, but his shot lacked power and was easily scooped up by Carson.

The pressure was certainly being sustained, but the penetration was lacking in the final third as the Shrimps continued to prove to be a tough nut to crack. Osew was again proving to be a great outlet on the left flank, and it was his near post cross which tested the Morecambe back-line as the ball was directed behind with Rudoni closing in. The Dons then almost took the lead that the second-half improvement deserved in fortuitous circumstances as Assal’s cross clattered against the bar with Carson beaten all ends up.

McCormick continued to be influential in the game, hustling and harrying the opposition at every opportunity before setting his team on the way to attack after continuously winning it back in centre field. Dapo Mebude and Egli Kaja were thrown on in a late bid to inject some more pace and directness into the game as we approached the final five minutes of normal time. Still there was no goal and as a result it was Ablade who was next to be introduced as he made his way on for his home debut with stoppage time approaching. However, it proved to not be enough as the teams walked away with a share of the points.

It was certainly a welcome clean sheet for the Dons after what was another improved performance, but in the end the scores finished level as we look ahead to Portsmouth’s visit to SW19 on Tuesday night.

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Ticket News

Your Matchday Guide for Morecambe game

Watch the Dons take on Morecambe

14 January 2022

On Saturday we finally have a home game after 42 days away from the Cherry Red Records Stadium - and there's still time to get your ticket.

Tickets

Book your ticket for the Dons versus Morecambe by ordering from our online ticket shop or you can buy on the day before the game.

Covid-19

Please note that face masks will be compulsory in all indoor areas, at all times. The only exception will be when you are eating and drinking - or when you are outdoors watching the game.

Secondly, and after discussion with our local health authority, we will be conducting random spot checks as part of a survey of fans who come to the Cherry Red Records Stadium on Saturday - and at future home games after that. The purpose of this is twofold - one, it will provide invaluable research material for the health authority and, two, it will get us all into a habit of following the best-possible practises.

The survey will work in the following manner: 

If approached, you will be asked to provide proof that you have been double jabbed as a basic minimum. This must have happened no less than 14 days clear of the second jab;

If the above isn't possible, you will be asked to show evidence of either a successful lateral flow test, PCR test or proof of recent recovery - no earlier than 48 hours prior to kick off. Alternatively, you should provide documentation showing you are exempt from these checks;

The spot-check survey will be carried out by our stewards and volunteers, who will be wearing distinctive tabards and carrying clipboards and checklists;

Home and away fans will be randomly selected as they queue to enter the stadium and before they go through each of the turnstile blocks into the main Cappagh (West) Stand - and also at the Ry (East), Movers (South) and Cherry Red Records (North) stands;

Fans will NOT be refused entry if they are unable to provide any Covid certification evidence. It is a spot check survey only and our target is to cover 10 per cent of our total stand capacity - and over 50 per cent of hospitality guests;

Nobody is exempt - including Cappagh Stand hospitality guests, directors, VIPS, and other visitors;

Inevitably, these surveys will slow down the process of entering the stadium and we urge all fans to bear this in mind by arriving much earlier than normal.

We also urge all fans to download the NHS app so their vaccination details are easily and clearly to hand. If you do not have a smartphone, your  vaccination card will be acceptable.

Fans using lateral flow tests can report their result via: https://www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result - certification of a negative test will then be sent via text or email.

The following links are helpful:

How to get an NHS COVID Pass - https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/covid-pass/

How to download a digital NHS COVID Pass - https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/get-digital-covid-pass/

Further information about COVID-19 - https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

We would urge all fans to take a lateral flow test before attending the match. Anyone who records  a positive result must NOT come to the Cherry Red Records Stadium under any circumstances. Instead, follow the correct NHS procedures. Even if you are double-vaccinated, you - or your friends - must not attend if you are feeling unwell, showing any of the Covid symptoms or are required to self-isolate.

Finally, we make no apologies for the measures outlined above. We do not want AFC Wimbledon to have failed its fans - and its wider community - by not doing everything possible to contain the spread of the Omicron variant.

Nor do we want to see a return to this time last year, when football stadiums across the country were empty and fans were ordered to stay away. If we all apply common sense and respect to one another, then we can continue to enjoy, in safety, what has been an exciting season at our new home.

How to access the Stadium

The Cherry Red Records Stadium will open for home fans from 1pm (two hours before kick-off) and it is advised that these fans arrive as early as possible. Away supporters can arrive from 1:30pm onwards. Supporters must enter the stadium via their designated entrance for their stand which is indicated on their ticket. Additionally, fans will be required to go through security where bags may be searched.

Below is a colour-coded map of the Stadium entrances to help fans find their allocated point of entry. 

Stadium entry.jpg

 

All home fans will enter via the Plough Lane end of the Stadium only. Please note that fans in the South London Movers Stand or Ry Stand can only enter via Gates 3, 4 and 5. Gate 6 is not open for this game. Fans seated in the Cappagh Stand can only enter via Gate 2.

Away fans can only access the Stadium by Gate 7, which is accessed via St Martin’s Way or Maskell Road. 

For fans who have purchased matchday hospitality, please enter the Stadium via Gate 1 which will open at 12pm. The map below highlights the hospitality blocks and lounges.

Map for stadium.jpg

Parking

There will be no parking on site (accessible spectators will be given separate guidelines). We recommend fans travel to the Stadium by train, bus, or, if you are local, by simply walking to the ground. There will be no parking available at Garrett Business Park.

Cycle Store

The cycle store will be open for our match against Morecambe from midday to 6pm located behind the Ry Stand. Please note that all bikes MUST be collected before 6pm. Please note that there will be a steward at the cycle store, however, fans leave their bikes stored at their own risk.

Bags

To help reduce queues at checkpoints, we ask fans not to bring bags into the Stadium where possible. If essential, then please only bring an A5 sized bag (21cm x 15 cm x 10cm) or a clear bag only. Large bags or suitcases (including cabin bags) are not permitted.

Cashless Stadium

We are currently operating a semi-cashless Stadium. This means that most of the Stadium will only accept card payments apart from the club shop and matchday magazine sellers. Fans who turn up on the day with only cash will be able to purchase vouchers in denominations of £10 at the matchday magazine stalls and the club shop, which can then be used to buy food and drinks in the concessions.

Food, Drinks and Pub

Food and drinks will be available to purchase at the Stadium, including the food park, which offers several different types of cuisines on offer from local food businesses. The food trucks that will be at the game against Morecambe are the following: MYPIE, Traditional Jerk Chicken, Dough Shack, Vegan Express and Naked Chips. Fans are also permitted to bring water in a clear plastic bottle if they wish. However, no glass, cans, metal bottles or thermos flasks will be allowed.

All fans will have access to food and drink concessions around the Stadium including the food park behind the Movers stand. Unfortunately due to fire regulations, fans in the Ry and Movers Stands will not have access to the first floor concessions in the Cappagh Stand. As a result, all fans seated in the Cappagh Stand will need to show their match ticket or have their hand stamped in order to get back to the first floor concourse.

The food trucks will stop serving at 6:30pm with last drink orders on the Movers Stand bar at the same time. The pub will also remain open after the game.

The Club Shop

The club shop will be open on Saturday from 11:30am to 2:45pm before the game and from 5pm to 6pm after the game.

Kids Zone

The Kids Zone will be open on Saturday for our match against Portsmouth. Not only will fans be able to meet Haydon, our favourite Womble, there'll also be tons of fun activities such as colouring, Lego, Duplo and Stickle Brix - as well as an  inflatable football shooting game. The Kids Zone is positioned on the concourse behind the Family Section on the corner of the East and South stands. Specifically for kids aged between 5-12, it is open from 1.30pm to 2.45pm with activities organised on a rotation basis. Please note that children MUST be supervised by parents at all times.

The map below shows the location of the Food Park, Pub, Club Shop, and the Kids Zone.

Cappagh Stand.jpg

Matchday Magazine

The matchday magazine can be purchased for £3 at the club shop and also inside each of our four stands. Sellers will also be positioned outside the Cappagh Stand entrance and along Plough Lane.

Reusable Cups

The club has implemented a reusable beer cup scheme to replace all single use plastic pint cups around the Stadium. Once fans have finished their beer, they are required to put these cups within the reusable cup bins located around the Stadium.

Dons Local Action Group Food Collection Point

We will once again be organising collection points at Cherry Red Records Stadium on Saturday with supporters invited to donate food to those less fortunate in the community. Masterminded by our award-winning Dons Local Action Group (DLAG), fans will be able to drop off tinned supplies - with an urgent need for tinned meat, tinned vegetables, tinned fish, tinned fruit, and tinned pulses. Food collection points will be located at every entrance into the stadium.

 

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