AFC Wimbledon secured a deserved 1-0 win over Harrogate Town on Tuesday night thanks to a belter of a goal from Omar Bugiel.
Our German-Lebanese striker decided the contest early on as he found the net with a curling finish with the outside of his foot – having previously been provider for two of our goals on the weekend.
This was a backs to the wall job if ever we’ve seen one, as we showcased great shape and organisation to grind out a victory that was the least we deserved on the balance of play.
Indeed Harrogate were limited to very little in the way of chances as we kept them at arm’s length whilst also creating openings of our own.
It was a vintage away performance that takes us higher up the League Two standings as momentum continues to build.
Johnnie Jackson kept faith with the same starting eleven that beat Tranmere Rovers 4-1 at the weekend, whilst the substitutes bench was also unchanged for this midweek fixture.
The Dons were quickly into their stride in comparison to Saturday and were rewarded for their drive and determination with the opening goal. Omar Bugiel picked up the ball in centre field before striding forward and unleashing a beautiful outside of the boot effort that flew into the bottom corner.
Ali Al-Hamadi then saw a shot saved as he looked to continue his hot streak in front of goal after bagging a hat-trick last time out. Out of possession we kept our shape well, limiting the pockets of space that Harrogate could exploit.
The hosts mustered their first effort of the night just north of the half hour mark, with Matty Daly firing into the hands of Alex Bass. Al-Hamadi then caused chaos in the penalty area as he blocked goalkeeper Mark Oxley’s clearance before the Sulphurites hacked the ball clear at the second time of asking. Our number 10 also saw a shot well saved after blitzing past a challenge.
Wimbledon headed in at the break in a commanding position as we looked to continue our unbeaten away run.
Our first opening of the second-half came via Armani Little, with the in-form midfielder firing off target following lovely link up play between Al-Hamadi and Jack Currie. Jake Reeves also had a go with an audacious lob that dropped wide of the far post as we sought a two-goal cushion.
Josh Neufville and Harry Pell were thrust into the action for the final quarter as bid to add more pace and physicality to our attack at a crucial stage of the contest.
It was the latter who almost notched a goal soon after being introduced as he met a corner strongly at the near post to force a save from Oxley.
However an increase in the lead wasn’t needed in the end as we showed expert game management to see the result through for a third win in a row.
AFC Wimbledon: Alex Bass, Jake Reeves, Ryan Johnson, James Tilley (James Ball), Ali Al-Hamadi, Armani Little, Omar Bugiel (Harry Pell), Jack Currie, Aron Sasu (Josh Neufville), Joe Lewis, Isaac Ogundere
PICS: Paul Thompson (Pro Sports Images)