Dons v Liverpool preview
Barry Fuller has handed the Dons a boost ahead of the FA Cup tie against Liverpool by coming through training today.
Vice-captain Fuller (pictured) had missed training this week after tweaking his hamstring in the win against Exeter, but Neal Ardley confirmed that Wimbledon’s right-back is in the frame to make the team.
Wimbledon will also have centre backs Adam Barrett and Jake Goodman available with both of their loan spells expiring after Monday’s cup tie and midfielder Sammy Moore is back in contention after shaking off illness.
Speaking to Rob Cornell during an interview for Dons Player, Neal Ardley said: “Barry suffered a slight hamstring tweak at the end of last week, but he has trained today and it looks like he will be okay. Both Adam and Jake are eligible to play. We had the foresight to put the dates when their loans expired back until after we thought the FA Cup ties would end.
“Sammy missed the Christmas period, but he has trained all week and physically he’s okay. We’re not far away from having everyone available.”
Neal Ardley says there is excitement among Wimbledon’s squad about the prospect of taking on a Liverpool side that could include Steven Gerrard in his final season with the Reds.
“I look around the team on the training field and they don’t look nervous,” Neal added. “They don’t look like the occasion will get to them. They are looking forward to the game and it’s a win-win situation. We’ve done well to get this far and we’re going to have a good go at it.
“Whatever team Liverpool put out they will be ready for what we bring and they will try and hurt us with what they have. They are leagues above us and we will have to bring our A-game and have plenty of energy about us to stand a chance. It would be great to see Gerrard on the pitch because it will give the boys a chance to pit their wits against a world-class player, but we will see what they bring.
“It’s the FA Cup and anything can happen. I think we’re all excited. After the Wycombe game we hoped for something to look forward to in the New Year and we got that. It’s been mayhem and the office staff have worked incredibly hard behind the scenes to make sure the game goes well. It’s my job to ensure it goes well on the pitch. I’m sure the atmosphere will be fantastic.
“We need to have a game plan. We cannot just go out and think ‘this is what we do and let’s get on with it’. Good players will tear you apart if you do that. We will do our best and we will work really hard on the training field. All the boys will know their jobs come Monday, but we are going to need a slice of luck.”
Dons Player subscribers can now watch Neal Ardley’s full update and an interview with Adam Barrett will follow shortly. Tomorrow we will feature Neal’s press conference ahead of Liverpool, along with interviews with Sammy Moore and Barry Fuller.