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Kick off 14:00 (UK)

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11 September 2018 Venue Unavailable Attendance

Kick off 14:00 (UK)

AFC Wimbledon Reserves
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MK Dons Reserves

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Match Reports

Young Dons pipped to a point on opening day

Rudoni scores again as Procter and Wood impress for the development side

11 September 2018

Jack Rudoni scored for the second time in a matter of days against Milton Keynes, as a young Wimbledon side just missed out on an opening day point in the Central League.

Rudoni gave Wimbledon an early lead against strong opposition and the young Dons could have finished with a share of the spoils at Merstham, but they were denied by a goal two minutes from time as they lost 2-1.

Alan Reeves' three new additions during the summer - Kyron Stabana, Kosta Sparta and the hard-working Tommy Wood (pictured) - all started. New Zealand international Nik Tzanev and skipper Paul Kalambayi helped form the defensive back line, where young centre-back Archie Procter again stepped up and shined.

Creative midfielder Rudoni, who got the winner in the under-18s fixture between the two sides on Saturday, opened the scoring on this occasion after 11 minutes. Rudoni's persistentance in the box paid off, as he calmly slotted home from an angle inside the area. 

The visitors responded and six minutes later put in a cross that just required a final touch to level the scores. The opposition continued to create further chances, but were kept out by Tzanev who was Wimbledon's saviour as he pulled off a diving save on the half hour.

Ten minutes before the break, Milton Keynes were level when Ryan Watson's shot bounced off the underside of the crossbar and was judged to have crossed the line. Ossama Ashley received a yellow card minutes later.

A minute before the break, Wood fired over following a promising move involving Ashley. Milton Keynes could have been in front at the break as they had further chances to score in the first half, while Wimbledon needed to raise their game.

Wimbledon did improve in the second-half, as striker Tommy Wood worked away up front. Ashley had a nasty collision with the railings, two minutes after the restart, when he tried to keep the ball in from a Neset Bellikli free-kick. Finlay Macnab stepped up from the under-18s to replace Ashley in midfield. Tyler Burey fired a shot on target, which the keeper tipped over to earn Wimbledon a corner.

With both sides looking for the lead striker Bobby Mills replaced Kosta Sparta, on his return from injury, just before the hour mark. However, with a quarter of the game to go Mills pulled up with an injury and was replaced by Donte Lodge-Francis.

With just under twenty minutes left, Wimbledon created an impressive passing move which resulted in Wood having his shot blocked at close range. Kalambayi placed his header wide of the upright from a Bellikli free-kick with twelve minutes remaining

As play switched to the other end in the closing stages and with Tzanev coming under increasing pressure, Archie Procter stood firm at the back denying Milton Keynes. Left back Tom Scott was back to his usual, vocal self as he attempted to encourage and organise, stepping up his return from a lengthy injury lay-off.

It was Milton Keynes who took the lead though, two minutes before the end of normal time, as they raced down the flank and Sam Nombe netted from an angle past Tzanev. It ultimately gave the visitors victory.

AFC Wimbledon: Tzanev, Stabana, Kalambayi (c), Procter, Scott, Bellikli, Sparta (Mills, Lodge-Francis), Rudoni, Ashley (Macnab), Wood, Burey.

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