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Glyn and Alex determined to turn it around with Crewe up next

Dons gear up for first match at Gresty Road since League 2 days

22 January 2021

We caught up with Glyn Hodges and Alex Woodyard ahead of Wimbledon’s first trip to Gresty Road in almost nine years.

The Dons will be aiming for a reversal in fortunes against the Railwaymen after a last-gasp 2-1 defeat at Plough Lane before Christmas.

Our squad yesterday trained on Sutton United’s 4G pitch with the inclement weather affecting the grass pitches at New Malden, and Glyn’s boys travelled up north today to continue preparations.

“All morning (Thursday) we were reviewing the game from Tuesday night and a few home truths were spoken,” said Glyn. “It’s unacceptable, and it’s not good at the moment. They understand that, but I am not going to throw the lads under the bus, I will back them to the hilt, because it is the same group that in the first 15 games had us at the right end of the table and everyone was getting excited about our chances. We will keep battling away, we will keep working, and something will turn.

"That was definitely a point that got away (versus Crewe). We looked back at it today and there were a couple of missed chances, but it was a calamitous error that lost us the game. It’s nice that we can play straight away after Tuesday. We have done some work and we know exactly how we are going to go about it. It’s not acceptable with the errors, but we keep working to eradicate them.

“They are resilient, they have been noisy and loud, but it’s just about in the heat of the battle: can they make the right decisions? We can go through stuff on the video, but there are certain decisions they have to make, and they have to show a bit more responsibility to make decisions at key times. We can get information onto them, but it is for them to do. They understand and there are some bright players out there, but they need to try and effect the others.

“We don’t want any shrinking violets, anyone feeling sorry for themselves I don’t want anywhere near me. I am a positive person, we are positive, and we know what we can do. It’s just a real tough ask at the moment, but the boys are showing the right mentality and they are giving everything they have got.”

Our manager said that he is edging closer to improving his squad during the transfer window. Glyn also had positive updates on Ben Heneghan and Ollie Palmer as they look to recover from injuries, but neither will be ready for tomorrow’s game. You can listen to the full interview below.

This time last year our experienced midfielder Alex Woodyard joined Tranmere Rovers on loan and he helped to spark a revival before the season was curtailed prematurely.

"Last year I went through the same, said Alex. “It is about sticking together, and the good thing about it is that we know what we need to do, and we know where we need to improve. Once we start doing that on the pitch I’m sure it will turn.

“When I first joined Tranmere they were struggling, but it is a just a case of winning that one game and then you can go on and win two or three. We are down there at the minute and it looks like doom and gloom, but I am not worried. I am gutted we are not picking up results at the moment, but the boys are working hard and taking on board what the manager is saying and we are learning. We are giving everything to turn this around.

"If you are a footballer on £50,000 a week in the Premier League and you are losing games then maybe you don’t care, but I can’t speak for them as I have never been in that position. The players at our level do care because ultimately if we keep losing games of football our wages go down, contracts are up, and you don’t want a relegation on your CV. We don’t want to start talking about that because there are 20-odd games to go. In a month’s time we could be looking up, rather than below us again. All the players care, that is never a problem, certainly at this club. Everyone cares and we all want to improve. The fans are paying to watch the games and we have to give them a certain level of performance – we need to give them wins.”

Wimbledon’s last visit to Crewe was in February 2012 when both clubs were in League 2. It was an absolute thriller as the Dons came back from 3-1 down to draw 3-3 with goals by Billy Knott, Sammy Moore, and Christian Jolley. You can watch Wimbledon’s return to Gresty Road by accessing a live stream on our iFollow channel.

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