Positive for the U-18s on a tough day
AFC Wimbledon Under-18s came back down to earth with a bump after the highs of last Thursday’s FA Youth Cup win as they were comfortably beaten by Dagenham & Redbridge.
Though only four players that started versus Ebbsfleet were selected from the outset at Dagenham, manager Mark Robinson refused to make any excuses for the 3-0 defeat.
The only bright spot for Wimbledon on a dark day at Dagenham was the return of attacking talent Judah Chapman (pictured), who returned after six weeks out due to injury.
minute when Tyrique Hyde scored with a fine 25-yard strike. It got worse for the Dons nine minutes before half-time when Daggers defender Scott Mitchell hooked in a second, Wimbledon limited to only a few chances in the first-half.thWimbledon started brightly, but they fell behind in the 11
A promising start to the second-half counted for little four minutes after the break when Jacob Berkowicz made it 3-0. Though Alfie Egan and Tino Carpene both came on as substitutes, Wimbledon were unable to make an impression in attack. A real positive on the day was the introduction with 25 minutes left of Judah Chapman, who made his comeback after injury.
Mark Robinson said: “On paper, two games in 34 hours with a 7.00 am departure time on the Saturday looked a tough task. However, we made seven changes from Thursday night so there are no excuses for the boys. It was the fifth occasion we had made a major reshuffle to cope with playing two games in quick succession and for a fifth time we came up short. Despite a bright start, we were fortunate the defeat was not heavier.
“Once again, it comes down to our off the ball structure, which was particularly impressive when we beat Southend and pretty good on Thursday night. It simply was not present again today. It hurts me to say it, but we cannot shuffle the pack and still get a result. There are reasons for this and it has nothing to do with ability.
“The four players who started on Thursday night looked a little fatigued, but they performed admirably with the desire, spirit and physical presence expected of a Wimbledon player. Unfortunately, I cannot say that for some of their team-mates. Due to the circumstances and the state of the pitch, it was the sort of game I would have taken delight in achieving a draw in gritty, determined fashion, but that was never going to be the case.”
Man of the match for Wimbledon was Seanan McKillop.