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Kick off 19:00 (UK)

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05 September 2023 Venue The Cherry Red Records Stadium Attendance

Kick off 19:00 (UK)

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English Football League Trophy

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Match Previews

Jack in contention as Johnnie targets Trophy win

Aiming to get off to a strong start

5 September 2023

Jack Currie is in line for a timely return tonight as we gear up to take on Stevenage in our opening EFL Trophy group game.

The match against the League One new boys provides Johnnie Jackson with the ideal opportunity to shuffle his pack after a hectic week which saw us take on Chelsea and Newport County.

Whilst the game could come at the right time for Jack, our manager has confirmed that it will come too soon for Paul Kalambayi.

Watch the full interview below.

Jack we’re really hopeful as he’s trained this week,” he explained. “He’s not been out as long and did the full pre-season. It’s one that we’ll definitely look at for Jack.

“It will come a bit too soon for PK. He’s been out a long time and he’s missed pre-season. He’s only just started training back with the group. We may look into arranging a friendly in a week or so for him to get some minutes.”

The Dons are set to face higher league opposition for the third time this season having already taken on Coventry City and Chelsea.

Stevenage claimed a league double over us last season – a record that Johnnie is looking to improve upon as we welcome Steve Evans’ side to the Cherry Red Records Stadium.

“We had two tough games against them last season,” he said. “Arguably we should’ve got more from those two games. There’s a score to settle there. They deserved to go up, they’re a good side that are well drilled. It’ll be a tough night but we’ll be giving it a go and looking to beat them.

“We want to win the game first and foremost. Like every game that we play, it’s an opportunity to use the squad. After the week that we’ve had, it’s certainly something that we need to look at. It’s also an opportunity for guys who haven’t had as many minutes to stake a claim.”

PICS:  Pro Sports Images

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Match Reports

Trophy drama as Lewis gets off the mark

A shootout bonus

5 September 2023

AFC Wimbledon walked away with two points from our opening EFL Trophy Group C game after getting the better of Stevenage on penalties.

An entertaining midweek encounter under the lights brought about a 1-1 scoreline after 90 minutes, meaning penalties were needed to decide who would take away an extra point.

It was the Dons who prevailed 6-5 on spotkicks thanks to a Nik Tzanev save and Charlie Lakin winner, on a night when Joe Lewis also bagged his first goal for the club with a brilliant header.

We once again put in another convincing performance against a side from a higher division, with our much changed side matching our League One counterparts well.

Johnnie Jackson made numerous changes to the side which drew 2-2 against Newport County, with Tzanev, Harry Pell, Josh Davison, Alex Pearce, Ryan McLean, Lakin, Ethan Sutcliffe and Aron Sasu all coming in.

The other headline change was the return of Jack Currie, who made his first appearance since being sidelined through injury at the back end of pre-season. Meanwhile our substitutes bench also took on a more youthful look, with Paris Lock and Kai Jennings both featuring.

There was an early opening for the Dons within the opening few minutes as Davison fired wide from distance following a nicely cushioned header by Morgan Williams. Up the other end Harvey White saw a free-kick deflected wide for the visitors.

White had another sighter around the half-hour mark as his volley dropped just wide of the far post. It was déjà vu for our side as well as Davison turned sharply before seeing his effort arrow off target. Sutcliffe showed great composure in moments, striding out from the back to link the play when opportunities arose.

Currie was equally impressive in the first-half, showing good awareness at the back post to cushion an incoming cross away to safety before the break. Tzanev was also called into action in added on time as he got a strong hand to a long range effort.

It was Stevenage that took the lead 10 minutes into the second-half, with Jamie Reid dispatching from the penalty spot after Jake Forster-Caskey had been adjudged to have been fouled.

Sasu was playing with plenty of confidence as he continuously got the better of his man down the left hand side. It was one of our defenders who came up with an equaliser however, with Joe Lewis getting his head to Williams’ free-kick to claim his first goal in yellow and blue.

The pressure was on the away side now as we moved into the ascendancy and it was the Dons that almost took the lead as a result with a goal mouth scramble ensuing following another well-delivered set piece.

There was another proud moment for our Academy in the final 10 minutes of the game, with Lock being handed his professional debut off the bench. Both sides pushed hard in the closing stages as eight minutes was shown on the fourth official’s board.

With the scores level after 90 minutes the extra point was decided by the lottery of penalty kicks. Every spotkick was squeaky clean for both sides up until the sixth, with Tzanev making the all-important save to tee up Lakin to fire home the winner as we won the shootout 6-5.

AFC Wimbledon: Nik Tzanev, Harry Pell (James Ball), Josh Davison (Paris Lock), Alex Pearce (Isaac Ogundere), Ryan McLean (James Tilley), Charlie Lakin, Ethan Sutcliffe, Jack Currie (Lee Brown), Morgan Williams, Aron Sasu, Joe Lewis

Attendance: 1,317 (95 away)

PICS: Ian Stephen (Pro Sports Images)

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