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Young Dons aim for 10

17 March 2015

Frost was the star man versus Rovers

AFC Wimbledon Under-18s will be bidding to make it 10 games unbeaten this Saturday at Cambridge United, but manager Mark Robinson has prioritised development over points during the rest of 2014/15.

The young Dons made it nine without defeat in the Merit League with a 1-1 draw against Bristol Rovers on Saturday with a goal from Reece Batchelor. However, the most pleasing aspect for Mark Robinson has been the displays of Under-16 players in his squad.

“Looking at the bigger picture there are plenty of positives,” said Mark. “We need to give the opposition more to think about in the final third, but we kept trying to play our passing football on a pitch that made it difficult. Once again, it was a very young squad with four Under-16s and only one second year scholar. All the Under-16s did very well, but young Paul Kalambayi, who is almost young enough to play Under-15 football, put in a pretty much faultless performance.

“Although the unbeaten record stays intact, I want us to be more of a threat going forward and I want to focus on development by bringing in even more Under-16s in the coming weeks.”

Billy Frost (pictured left with Mark Robinson) earned the man of the match award for another impressive midfield display and he helped the Dons start well on Saturday. Though Will Mannion had to make a good save early on, Dan Ano had a great chance to beat Rovers goalkeeper Kieran Preston, but he fired over from 14 yards.

The Dons were forced into a change after half an hour with Dom Bongo having to be withdrawn and that meant Under-16 George Marchant partnered Kalambayi at centre-back. Though Wimbledon lost momentum for the rest of the first half, they restricted Rovers to very little.

a long ball from Frost was flicked on by Under-16 Jayden Antwi and Batchelor showed a fine turn of foot to get in behind and head home. The lead was short-lived, though it was a controversial equaliser as Wimbledon claimed that Blake Davies’ effort had not crossed the line after the ball bounced down off the crossbar.  minute whenthWith captain Frost taking good control of midfield, Wimbledon regained superiority after the break. The breakthrough came in the 54

 Wimbledon came closest to winning it in the latter stages, first when Batchelor had an effort brilliantly saved by Rovers goalkeeper Kieran Preston. A fine volley from Jason Stripp was then also turned aside by Preston as the Dons had to settle for a point that at least kept their unbeaten run going.

  for more information.Young DonsSeveral of Mark Robinson’s Under-18s will be in action for Alan Reeves’ development squad against AFC Bournemouth tonight (7.00 pm kick-off at Merstham). Click on  

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