By Rob Cornell
New midfield loan signing Jimmy Abdou revealed the persuasive powers of Neal Ardley to join his push for League One success was the key factor in his move to AFC Wimbledon.
"Neal is the main reason I joined the club as he found a way to convince me to come here and hopefully I will find a way with the squad for us to do something this season," said Jimmy in an interview to our premium iFollow channel.
"I'm really glad and excited to be here and hopefully we'll have a successful season now. I've just come here to do my best and help the club move forward. Saturday was a good result against a Premier League side (a 3-2 victory over Watford) and hopefully we'll continue like that. I've spoken to the manager a bit, I know exactly what he wants from me, and hopefully I'll give him that."
Having just turned 33 and with nearly 350 appearances to his name with Millwall, Neal Ardley believes his new recruit will bring experience to the Dons engine-room – and Jimmy certainly has that in abundance.
"Hopefully I can use my experience of getting through a couple of League One play-off finals and with the boys we can push on and try to do our best," added Jimmy. "I've had a really good welcome from them, so I'm happy. Paul Robinson was my captain, back in the day at Millwall, he's a good pro, and I'm happy to be linking-up with him as well."
Jimmy is also well aware of the challenge facing Wimbledon in League One this season after again helping the Lions to make their way out of the division against Bradford at Wembley in May.
"League One is a very competitive league and there are some some big clubs in there - it will be hard - but I think we've got the attributes to do something this season. I've been with Millwall for nine years, so it's a new challenge for me. I'm looking forward to it now and I want to try to do my best."
The Comoros international has faced Wimbledon on a couple of occasions in his career and is looking forward to learning more about the club's meteoric rise from non-league to Football League.
"I've played against Wimbledon a few times and been to the stadium as well, so I know a bit about the club and the progression," added Jimmy. "The main thing is I'm pleased to be a part of this club and hopefully we are going to move forward as well. I'm looking forward to getting to know more about the history and meeting the fans as I'm here for the whole season."
The full interview with Jimmy Abdou is available to iFollow subscribers along with post-match reaction from the Watford game from manager Neal Ardley and match-winner Alfie Egan.