Glyn Hodges believes that 18-year-old midfielder Jack Rudoni has shown that he can cope with stepping up to League One football and our manager is pleased to welcome him back into the squad.
‘Rudi’ has shaken off a hamstring injury in time to be involved in the Tuesday night home match against play-off chasers Burton, offering him a chance to recapture the impressive form that kept his place in midfield before injury intervened. However, fellow midfielder Max Sanders, who injured his hamstring in the win against Peterborough, has not recovered in time to make the frame.
“Jack Rudoni is fit, but Max Sanders misses out unfortunately," Glyn confirmed. "Scott Wagstaff is back after his suspension, so we’ve got key players available for selection. We’ve given a lot of debuts to players and you are always mindful because you never know how they are going to react, but I thought Jack had a great full debut and he stayed in the side. He had a good couple of games after that. He’s back, he gives us legs, he’s a quality player with a good left foot and he has a good attitude. Jack is one who could figure prominently from now until the end of the season.”
Though Anthony Wordsworth produced an effective display in the centre of the park as a substitute against Peterborough, Glyn wants to ensure that the experienced midfielder remains an option for the rest of this season.
“He came on probably a little bit earlier than we expected and he did really well,” said Glyn. “He might not get the start tomorrow night, but he’s obviously high up and he will be coming on at some stage. It’s just a question of making sure that he stays fit and that we wrap him up in cotton wool a bit. We still have to improve his fitness, so it’s just a case of being clever and keeping him on the pitch.”
Wimbledon’s fixture against Burton will be the first for 10 days since that vital win against Peterborough United and Glyn added that the break has been used effectively.
“I have enjoyed the break,” said Glyn. “We’ve given the boys time off in previous breaks, but for this break we haven’t given them much time off. We’ve been working hard on the training ground. We’ve been ironing out some stuff and making sure that for this game, and heading into February, that we’ve done our groundwork and we’re ready to go.
“It’s been a chance to put some work into them, it’s just not tactical. It’s a physical hit as well. We are not going to get too many chances now, it’s going to be Saturday, Tuesday, for a number of weeks, so it’s going to be about preparing and recovering. Chris McConnell has been great, we sit down every morning and plan what we are going to do and plan the workload. We’ve had too many soft tissue injuries, so that’s something we are looking at and trying to put right. There’s a lot going into it and the boys have responded well.”
We still have terrace tickets available to watch The Dons take on Burton tomorrow night. Book in advance from our online ticket shop.