Simon Bassey is expecting AFC Wimbledon supporters to show the same passion and backing during this season’s run-in that sparked the club’s remarkable rise through the leagues.
Firstly as a player, then as a reserve team coach, and now as part of the first-team management, Simon has been at the heart of Wimbledon’s six promotions since 2002. With AFC Wimbledon now battling to stay in League One with 14 games left, our first-team coach believes the unique spirit formed during the club’s ascent can play a part.
Speaking ahead of Saturday’s home match against Bristol Rovers, Simon said: “As one as a club, we need to focus on where we need to be, especially with moving forward into a new stadium. Our aim is to be a League One club when that comes. We can only do it together; as players, as staff, and as supporters. During the course of my time here, 16 years, when the players have needed the fans they have been fantastic. You go back to big moments from the short history of AFC Wimbledon; when we were 1-0 down at Staines Town in the Ryman Play-Off Final, having lost two previously, the fans were magnificent. If you ask any of those boys, they won the game on the back of fantastic support. If you look to the Fleetwood game when it was probably our toughest spell, the crowd were brilliant. I fully expect them to be the same again.
“All of the hard work that everyone put into starting this club in the first place, to build it up into a League One club moving to a new stadium, with their time, effort and money, it has been a pleasure to see. I know that when the boys need them, they will come out in force and really get behind the team. I sat in the kids enclosure, which was that end by the River Wandle, at Plough Lane. Fingers-crossed, we will be in the dug-out, about a nine iron away from where I used to sit.
“Everyone involved has done a fantastic job for us to be going back there. A lot of people said AFC Wimbledon was impossible, I think now they are seeing that dreams do happen. With the right people in charge, which we have, we will keep dreaming. We will dream bigger, no one knows what will happen once we get to Plough Lane.”
Following four successive defeats, Simon added: “Collectively as a squad and staff, as one, we have to do better. A week is a long time in football. From looking up the table and seeing if we could drag a few more into the big pack, we’ve had a poor week, and we’ve slipped down. We know we’ve got 14 games to go and we are going to need everyone to be on the same page collectively.”
Terrace tickets are still available for Saturday’s League One home match against Bristol Rovers. Visit our online ticket shop to order in advance.
Rob Cornell's full interview with Simon Bassey is available to view on iFollow via the link above.