Important victories against Fleetwood have played a big part in AFC Wimbledon’s history – and the Dons will be seeking another vital win against the Cod Army on Easter Monday.
Promotion was achieved into the league back in 2011 with a memorable play-off semi-final victory versus Fleetwood along the way and in 2013 came that dramatic survival Saturday when Jack Midson’s penalty prevented us from slipping back into non league.
Fast forward almost eight years and three points at Plough Lane could move Wimbledon out of the League One drop zone and Head Coach Mark Robinson has plenty of belief that the current squad have what it takes to stay up this season.
Below are quotes from Robbo, team news, and a look at previous matches versus Fleetwood.
“The lads don’t need lifting. They believe in what we are doing and the spirits are high in the squad, despite the disappointment of coming away from Plymouth with nothing after playing so well in the second-half. They are excited about what we are aiming to achieve. We trained on Sunday and just focused on adding layers to the solid base we have built.
“They fully believe that we are going to stay up. They are fantastic lads, and no one is walking around during the week moping. It’s about coming up with solutions to turn performances into points. It’s just how we get these wins, and we will get them.
“We will be looking for a better performance at Plough Lane than what we produced against Northampton, but that was probably a better performance than we realised at the time. We limited them to one shot at goal and they have been in good form recently.”
Shane McLoughlin has been ruled out for this game with a groin injury that he picked up while warming up at Plymouth on Friday. Dan Csoka has recovered from illness, so he comes back into contention for the squad. Alex Woodyard is suspended as he serves the second match of his ban for picking up 10 bookings this season. Paul Osew will miss Monday’s match due to illness. Fleetwood are still without defender Charlie Mulgrew and goalkeeper Joel Coleman, both players sidelined with long-term injuries.
A look at Fleetwood
Football had been played in Fleetwood before a more definite picture emerged in the 1880s. Fleetwood Rangers was the first of a number of incarnations. One of the highlights of Fleetwood Town's history as a non league club was a trip to Wembley to play in the FA Vase Final in 1985 with 7,000 Fleetwood supporters cheering on the Cod Army. Fleetwood were beaten by Halesowen Town at Wembley, but almost three decades later the club’s fans went back there to celebrate a memorable victory in their history. In 2014, Antoni Sarcevic scored a free-kick against Burton Albion to earn promotion in the play-off final at Wembley. It was Fleetwood's sixth promotion since 2005 when Chairman Andy Pilley's arrival paved the way from the North West Counties League into the third tier of English football.
In recent seasons Fleetwood have shown ambition to make a renewed push for the Championship, and they were beaten in the play-off semi-finals by Wycombe Wanderers last year. Joey Barton left his position as manager in February, and Fleetwood decided to go for the experience of Simon Grayson as his replacement. Midfielder Callum Camps is Fleetwood’s top scorer with 10 goals this season, and Paddy Madden – a Wimbledon nemesis in the past - has again made a notable contribution with eight goals so far. Fleetwood have lost their last two matches, but they had won three out of four before that, and on Saturday it took an 89th minute goal by Jonson Clarke-Harris for promotion candidates Peterborough to defeat them.
The Dons have a good record versus Fleetwood, stretching back to the day when the two clubs were vying for promotion into the league during the 2010/11 season. Wimbledon have won eight out of the 18 meetings with five wins for the Cod Army. Though there have been several dramatic matches between the clubs, the first meeting ended in a 0-0 draw on 18 January 2011.
The last meeting (26 September 2020)
Fleetwood 0-1 AFC Wimbledon
Steve Seddon wasted no time making his mark in a Dons shirt again as he fired home superbly to secure Wimbledon’s first league victory of the season.
In a match when the Dons defended resiliently throughout, Seddon provided the cutting edge to help Wimbledon to a hard-earned 1-0 victory against a side that reached the League One play-offs last season. Latching onto a Joe Pigott pass, left-back Seddon, who was making his first appearance since rejoining the Dons, showed the scoring instinct that made him such a favourite in his first loan spell with us. Click on the link below to watch the highlights from that match.
Going further back! (11 May 2011)
AFC Wimbledon 6-1 Fleetwood
There was simply no stopping AFC Wimbledon nine years ago as Terry Brown's men swept aside Fleetwood in the play-off final second leg.
Kaid Mohamed's hat-trick provided the spark and goals from Danny Kedwell, Christian Jolley, and James Mulley earned an 8-1 aggregate win. It emphatically secured a date with destiny for Wimbledon - a chance to earn the club's rightful place back in the Football League.
Of course, we all know what happened at Manchester, as the Dons earned a fifth promotion in nine years by edging out Luton Town on penalties.
Take a look below at extended highlights from that semi-final second leg against Fleetwood.
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