He spent just five months at AFC Wimbledon, but Steve Seddon made a lasting impression on our supporters with his energetic displays on the left flank and three vital goals during the run-in last season.
With the anniversary of our Great Escape approaching – one of the greatest survivals from relegation in history as the Dons were nine points off safety on 2 March 2019 – we caught up with Steve about his loan spell with us. The Birmingham City left-back joined Portsmouth on loan in January and was part of a Pompey side that defeated us a few months ago, but he said that Wimbledon will always be a special club for him.
Below is the first part of our ‘catching up’ with Steve Seddon interview:
Whatever happens in your career, will helping Wimbledon to stay in League One be tough to beat in terms of the achievement?
“It’s still quite fresh in my mind, but it will be hard to beat. It was very much a unique experience that we had. For the staff and players, it was a big reward for all the hard work – we had only been beaten once in the last 12 games of the season. We managed to stay unbeaten for a long period after being bottom of the table until March. It was a great effort to pick up so many points during the run-in. It shows what a good team spirit we had as a group of players. I can’t really describe the feelings after Bradford, but it was very emotional. It was a great feeling to have stayed up against the odds and to celebrate with the supporters.
How much did you improve as a player from being at Wimbledon?
“I learned a lot and it was an important spell in my career. Only in 10 years will I realise just how important those five months were for me as a player. Even at the minute, it feels like it was a big five months for me. It really helped to improve me and that’s what I loved about it as well.
“Glyn is a good guy who knows his stuff. He’s always willing to work with players to make them better. That makes a big difference. All the backroom staff at Wimbledon really cared about the club. They showed that care and there’s nothing better as a player than a group of staff that really care and want you to show what you are capable of.
“I knew that Wimbledon held a special place in the hearts of Wally and Glyn. They both had good times at Wimbledon as players, but they had also gone on to do well at other clubs.”
We’ve seen clips of Rambo, Woody, and the boys celebrating on the team coach after Bradford, but what do you remember about the trip back from West Yorkshire?
“The coach back was very lively and I’ve still got videos to this day that would be best just staying on my phone! The time back from Bradford was about four hours, but it seemed to go very quickly! Everyone was having a good time and the videos I’ve got still give me a good laugh when I watch them!
Why do you think that you developed such a good rapport with our supporters?
“The fans at Wimbledon make it a special club. When players come in, work hard, and give it their all, the fans really appreciate it. I think at Wimbledon, more so than at other clubs, the fans want a close relationship with the players. I think you seen that with the way they took Aaron Ramsdale to their hearts, he had a close relationship with the supporters, and it’s a special group of fans. It’s not 30,000 fans that come to the games every week. Instead, it’s a sell-out most weeks with less than 5,000 supporters, which is good because you recognise a lot of the faces. You do become very comfortable at home because you turn up at the ground and you see the same faces. You remember them because they are looking to have a good relationship with the players and they are eager to interact with the players.”
When you scored that vital goal at Luton, you were effectively playing as a forward! How did you end up in that position?
“I think fans and players at Wimbledon knew I tended to wander a bit and I still do! When the ball goes forward I tend to wander into positions and I think it just turned out that I was in the right place at the right time. The keeper saved Joe Pigott’s shot and I just managed to nod it in. I was finally rewarded for a lot of wandering forward!”
What was the key to staying up?
"I think the fact that everyone enjoyed coming in every day to training was important. Though every player says that they enjoy their football, sometimes it’s not enjoyable for them to come in every day. Some days can be bad for different reasons. At Wimbledon, every player in the squad really enjoyed coming in every day and every player was very important to the team.
“The good thing about that group was that everyone was working for each other and it was enjoyable to be a part of it. There was no selfishness in the group.”
You were only with us for five months, but did it feel like longer?
“It felt like I played two seasons in one last season, I had one at Stevenage and one at Wimbledon. I played virtually every game while I was at both clubs. It was great to be a part of it at Wimbledon, I enjoyed every minute of it. This season I didn’t get much game-time at Birmingham, before going to Portsmouth.”
How are you coping with the lockdown?
“I think I am doing well! My girlfriend is keeping me sane, but I don’t know how much more she can handle of it! Most days are simple. I obviously go out and do some fitness work, chill for a bit, and then play some Call of Duty, and then settle down again.”
Steve said shortly after arriving at AFC Wimbledon that he was up for the big challenge of keeping us in League One and he certainly proved that! Take a look at a video below, which chronicles Steve's key moments in a Wimbledon shirt.