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Will: Let’s go and finish the job

Home-grown defender determined to keep Wimbledon up

30 April 2019

Will Nightingale said that Wimbledon’s much-improved defensive performances during the second-half of 2018/19 has been a real team effort and he’s determined to complete the job at Bradford.

The Dons have an opportunity to seal survival at Bradford on Saturday after the hard-fought win against Wycombe, but the centre-back knows there’s still work to be done in the battle to stay up.

“The lads did a brilliant job (against Wycombe). It was nervy winning by just the one goal, but I think we were good for it. We are proving to people how good we can be. We have got a lot of potential in this squad. Let’s go and finish the job at Bradford. All that matters now is retaining our League One status. I think we’ve finished the season strongly and long may that continue into the Bradford game.

“I’ve probably been the oldest in the back-line in recent weeks. I’ve tried to step-up to the plate and talk when I can, but I need to get that balance right between talking to every single player on the pitch and then doing my job. I can’t lose focus on doing my job. I’m trying to do my job, but I’m enjoying the challenge of it. The whole back five have been brilliant. Rambo has picked up an award, which is fully deserved.

“I’ve come through with Paul and Toby, I’ve known them for a few years, playing with the pair of them for the Under-23s, which was brilliant. Reevesy has done a great job with us. Steve Seddon has also come in on loan and been brilliant. Terell Thomas has also had a great season – he has been an unsung hero for me – and then we have Rod McDonald with his experience. I think we would be comfortable now if Deji had been in there, he is that good a player."

Though Will earned the WISA Allen Batsford Player of the Year award, he believes there is plenty of room for improvement in his game.   

“I’m quite critical of myself," added Will. "I think I’ve done fairly well this season, but I want to be doing more. I want to be doing better, so I’m trying hard to learn from Wally and Glyn because they’ve been brilliant since they’ve come in. To give me the captaincy filled me with a lot of confidence. Wally is a defensive specialist and I can take so much from him. That’s what I’m trying to do. I’m trying to learn at least one thing from the manager every single day because he has a lot of knowledge and experience, including at Reading, when his side recorded the most points in the Championship. Everyone knows too how technical Glyn is with his coaching, so I’m trying to take what I can from him as well. Glyn has been brilliant too.”

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