Update from Neal and high praise for Toby Ajala
Neal Ardley will check on the fitness of several players before naming his squad for tomorrow night’s match against Northampton Town.
Speaking to Rob Cornell on Dons Player, the Wimbledon manager updated us on his side’s preparations for Northampton and provided the latest team news for the clash at the Cherry Red Records Stadium.
Jim Fenlon, Stacy Long and Warren Cummings have all been struggling with illness, while Alan Bennett and Mat Mitchel-King must shake off knocks in order to retain their places at the heart of Wimbledon’s defence. Luke Moore missed Saturday’s win against Bradford due to a shin injury, but he trained today and could be back, while striker Paul McCallum (ankle) is also touch and go.
Toby Ajala (pictured) makes the final Wimbledon appearance of his 93-day loan spell from Bristol City tomorrow night – and Neal Ardley has praised his significant contribution during that time.
“We are looking to try and bring one or two more players in on loan,” the Wimbledon boss confirmed. “I thought Toby had his best game for us on Saturday – he was absolutely outstanding. I made a point after the Chesterfield match of saying that he cost us the first goal as I knew that he would have the character to handle that. I am a massive believer that what you produce between Monday and Friday ends up being the result on Saturday and Toby trained well all week. I was really positive that he would play well on Saturday and having watched the video footage back, he was outstanding.”
Neal Ardley believes Wimbledon will have to improve again if they are to earn a second successive victory tomorrow night.
“All we can do is try to keep positive and look at what we can do better,” he added. “We have to put into practice a game plan to deal with what Northampton are good at. If we can do that, play with high energy and no fear, then we can get a result. There are loads of improvements to be made and we have looked at the video of Saturday’s game today. Hopefully we can raise our game a bit and put in a better performance that will get us the points.
“We had a spell on Saturday for 10 minutes when we lost our way a bit, but we came through that sticky spell and the players kept going. Both goals came from nothing really as one was from a set-piece and the other was from a cross, but if you stick with it then sometimes the tide will turn.”
Dons Player subscribers can now watch the full video interview with Neal Ardley and tomorrow we feature the thoughts of Toby Ajala ahead of his final Wimbledon match before returning to Bristol City.