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Interviews

Team News: Extra squad options for taking on Barnsley

Interview with the manager ahead of home match on Saturday

17 January 2019

AFC Wimbledon will be boosted by the return of fit-again players for the home match against Barnsley on Saturday and new signings are also in contention to feature.

Wally Downes confirmed that Terell Thomas is back in contention after shaking off a calf injury and he took a part in full training today. Scott Wagstaff is also pushing to be back involved as he has trained all week after putting a calf injury behind him and Joe Pigott could make his first-team return after stepping up his fitness by playing for the development squad in midweek.

New signings Steve Seddon and Dylan Connolly have both looked sharp in training, according to Wally, and they are in contention to make their home debuts, along with on-loan goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale.

Kwesi Appiah (hamstring), Rod McDonald (ankle), and James Hanson (groin) are all still ruled out.  

“Terell trained today,” said Wally. “He is fine and available for selection. Kwesi was out running, but he’s probably not at the same stage, and the same with Rod. They are partially training, but hopefully from Monday they will be out there full-blast.

“Dylan played well for the reserves the other day. He got a great amount of crosses in, but we had to tweak the team around a little but due to an injury. We only really got a half out of him from what I want. Steve has done two training sessions and he’s looked sharp and bright.”

The manager is pleased to have extra options available as he gets the squad ready for a big week that includes matches against Barnsley, Fleetwood, and West Ham.

“We’ve got players back and they are hungry to get into the team,” added Wally. “Finally, I’ve got a problem to solve with picking from a bigger squad, so that’s good. We had it the other week when we had the possibility of nine points and we got seven out of nine. We were disappointed to only get seven points from those games, but we got a clean sheet out of the last one, so that was a first for us at the time. This week it starts with Barnsley and if we can get a good start in that one it puts us into Fleetwood and then anything can happen in the FA Cup game. It all starts with the first-half against Barnsley and we have to make sure we give a good account of ourselves then.

“We are back home after having a reasonable road trip. We got through in the FA Cup and got a good point at Coventry. We also played well at Portsmouth. Now we have to take all that good play, bring it home, and show the hunger and desire required to win.”

The full interview with Wally is available to watch by clicking on the link to our iFollow channel above.


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