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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

14 September 2019 Venue Kingsmeadow Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

AFC Wimbledon Match Preview

13 September 2019

Marcus Braddock looks ahead to this weekends Sky Bet League One trip to AFC Wimbledon

After an eleven-day enforced abstention from competitive football, Town fans should be champing at the bit at the prospect of any sort of game. We travel to that London to play the Dons of Wimbledon who have been having a bit of a torrid time since the season started with no wins in any competition. It's an odd quirk of football that a team like Wimbledon can score 50% more goals than us in League One but still, find themselves a good few positions lower with six fewer points. Those sorts of numbers probably underline the importance of a good defence and we need only look at the 12 goals they've conceded in seven games to see why they've yet to win. Having said all of that, they've yet to be hammered and they have held a clean sheet this season, and that was at home to unbeaten Wycombe. They've also scored in every game they've played so far apart from the previously mentioned draw at Wycombe. So although they've not started too well, it's clear that they have serious threats that could cause us problems this weekend.

Last seasons top Scorer Joe Piggot got himself off the mark against Rotherham on the opening Saturday of the season but has yet to add to it in the seven games since then. Kwasi Appiah has chipped in a couple of goals, making him Wimbledon's current top scorer, he also received a yellow card during both the games he's scored in but not in any of his other appearances so far this season. One of the Dons most recent transfers seemed to pay off immediately when Marcus Forss joined on loan from Brentford and scored in his first game against Milton Keynes.

During the close season, Wally Downes added to his defensive options by bringing in Gillingham defender Luke O'Neill, Rochdale loan defender Ryan Delaney and Nesta Guinness-Walker from Metropolitan Police. Both Guinness Walker and O'Neill have been on the score sheet with the latter scoring twice, one in League One and the other in the EFL Cup. There were also midfield additions with Callum Reilly joining 25-year-old Luke O'Neill from Gillingham being the most noticeable., having played every game so far this season.

Head to Head

We've played this particular incarnation of Wimbledon ten times since the first came into being. Town have won 50% of those games with the Dons winning just once and the rest ending in draws.   The one win for the Dons also saw them score three times, more than we've ever scored against them. Our best win against them was a 2-0 win at Montgomery Waters Meadow in 2015 with goals from Scott Vernon and Liam Lawrence.


Graham Salisbury from Lancashire. Games this season: 5. Yellow cards: 17. Red cards: 0.

Pre-match press

Wally Downes has said that he has "no qualms" about using his three new loan signings Marcus Forss, Max Sanders (pictured), and Ryan Delaney their home debut.

Sam Ricketts has welcomed the return of Ro-Shaun Williams and Ollie Norburn but has also mentioned that they won't be rushed back before they are completely ready.

Team News

Wimbledon will be without midfielder Simon Wordsworth but do have new loan players to use if need be. We have our influential duo of Ollie Norburn and Ro-Shaun Williams back in training and also have Jason Cummings and Callum Lang available for the first time after arriving from Notts Forest and Wigan respectively.


I've been looking forward to this one and not just because we haven't played in a while. I'm looking forward to seeing Jason Cummings and Callum Lang. That's not to say they will definitely both be in the first team, Sam Ricketts has given himself plenty of options and I'm not sure that Sam Ricketts will blood both in the same team at the same time. We also have a couple of returning players in Ollie Norburn and Ro-Shaun Williams. Again, given the manager's comments, I wouldn't bet that all four will be starting in the same team this weekend. Result wise, I can see Wimbledon giving everything they have to get that first win on the board and with new additions, they may be a slightly unknown quantity. My heart says we will win this one but my head tells me that a draw would be a decent result against a potential banana skin.

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Match Reports

AFC Wimbledon 1 Shrewsbury Town 1

14 September 2019

Jason Cummings' debut goal gives Town a share of the points at the Cherry Red Records Stadium

Debutante Jason Cummings came off the bench to secure a point for Town after a late equaliser.

Sam Ricketts made a number of changes to his team after the international break allowed players to rest and recuperate. Captain Ollie Norburn made his return in the midfield today after a lengthy injury kept him on the side-lines. Defender Ro-Shaun Williams also made his return from injury and straight back into the starting 11.

Ricketts started new boy Callum Lang up top alongside Daniel Udoh as Shaun Whalley was suspended after receiving a red card at Ipswich two weeks ago. Scott Golbourne and Louis Thompson haven't been named in this week's squad. Stand-in captain Dave Edwards was out of this week's game due to picking up a slight knock.

Norburn got the game underway after he played the ball to Ro-Shaun who played a long ball down the right-wing to find Donald Love and managed to win a throw deep into The Dons' half. Town looked strong, full of energy and started the game with pressure and goal-scoring opportunities.

Town's first major chance was within the first two minutes after Ro-Shaun weaved through Dons' defence on the right and down to the by-line and forced a corner. Goss fired a ball into the box and found a Wimbledon head that was headed onto a teammate and was close to finding the back of the net.

Minutes later, Wimbledon find their feet and come to attack. Joe Pigott found himself through on goal after bringing Max O'Leary off his line. Ethan Ebanks-Landell made his recovery run and blocked Pigott's shot.

Another chance for Town again after Love won a header that fell at the feet of Sean Goss in the middle, Goss played a ball to Norburn and Norburn played a long ball over the top to new striker Callum Lang. Lang chased down the ball but ended up giving away a cheap foul deep in Wimbledon's own half.

Shortly after, O'Leary almost made a mistake after he attempted to roll the ball out to Ro-Shaun down the right. The ball fell short and allowed The Dons to win back possession and they fired a cross into Town's box. Luckily, it was too long and went out of the way of any danger.

Once again, Wimbledon had another good chance after Marcus Forss twisted and turned on the edge of Town's 18-yard-box. Forss managed to fire a shot, but it was scuffed and rolled wide of the goal.

Town produced some good play in the first 20 minutes after Aaron Pierre got the ball back into play with a throw-in finding Norburn and then played it to Udoh. Udoh fired a low, cross ball out to Love, Love touched it first time to Laurent and he managed to force a corner for Town. Goss stepped up to take the corner, but it was headed out, it fell at the feet of Norburn, who shot but Nathan Trott managed to get down and save Norburn's effort.

As the 25-minute mark approached, both teams quickly regrouped and headed towards their dugouts for a drink break. Both teams had plenty of possession, created chances and battled well.

The half-hour mark approached, and Wimbledon had a corner. Anthony Hartigan stepped up to cross in the corner that looked to be flying through the middle of the box. It found the head of Joe Pigott and The Dons took the lead. 1-0.

As half-time was creeping up on us both teams were looking for a goal. Town produced some good football with switching play between the backline and the midfield. However, Wimbledon managed to break and played a through ball towards the front post of O'Leary's goal, the ball was played towards the back post but somehow was put wide of the goal from three yards out.

Wimbledon were still applying the pressure and looking for their second goal as they continued to play high and press Town's back four. As the Dons took a corner it turned into a goalmouth scramble and Goss managed to clear it. The ball fell to Udoh and he began to break down the right. Nesta Guinness-Walker received the first yellow of the game after he pulled on Udoh's shirt and then tripped him up.

Half-time: Wimbledon 1 – 0 Shrewsbury

Town came out for the second half looking strong and not to concede again. After having many chances in the first half, Town looked to finish their chances in the second half.

The first chance of the second half came for Goss. He twisted and turned on the edge and was shown on his right foot. The shot took a deflection and went heading out for a corner. Goss stepped up to take the corner as it was flying towards the back post where Pierre was there and waiting for it, however, he just couldn't reach it.

Goss again, had a really good effort after he smashed a shot just over the bar. Town were looking full of energy and eager for their goal. Town were so close to scoring on many occasions. It was time for Jason Cummings to make his debut after Daniel Udoh made his way off after a good performance.

A long ball over the top, fell to Ryan Giles down the left-wing, Giles crossed the ball to debutante Cummings, and he couldn't miss. From six yards out Cummings placed the ball into the back of Trott's net and bought the scoreline level.

With the play going from one end of the field to the other end, both teams looked as if they were going to get the next goal. Another great chance came for Town five minutes before the end as Cummings found himself one on one with Trott. Dons' captain Will Nightingale made a brilliant recovery run and denied the shot that went out for a corner. Once again, it fell to Cummings who attempted a brilliant overhead kick, but Trott made the effort look an easy save.

With five minutes added on and play being end to end, Town wanted another goal and the winning goal. Laurent could've won the game for Town. After substitute, Brad Walker, broke with the ball in the middle of the field, he had Cummings to his right and Laurent to his left. Walker played Laurent in as he beat his defender, Laurent attempted to curl the ball around Trott but managed to place it wide.

Town return to Montgomery Waters Meadow with one point after an overall good performance at AFC Wimbledon.

AFC Wimbledon: 1 Nathan Trott GK, 2 Luke O'Neill, 5 Will Nightingale (c), 7 Scott Wagstaff, 8 Anthony Hartigan, 15 Marcus Forss, 18 Nesta Guinness–Walker, 21 Ryan Delaney, 30 Paul Kalambayi, 33 Callum Reilly OFF 72, 39 Joe Pigott OFF 78

SUBS: 13 Nik Tzanev GK, 9 Kwesi Appiah on 78, 10 Adam Roscrow, 12 Jack Rudoni, 17 Michael Folivi, 23 Max Sanders ON 72, 37 Paul Osew

Town: 25 Max O'Leary GK, 2 Aaron Pierre, 5 Ro-Shaun Williams, 8 Oliver Norburn (c) OFF 78, 9 Callum Lang OFF 84, 11 Ryan Giles, 17 Donald Love, 23 Daniel Udoh OFF 67, 24 Ethan Ebanks-Landell, 28 Josh Laurent

SUBS: 1 Joe Murphy GK, 6 Omar Beckles, 15 Brad Walker ON 78, 18 Luke McCormick, 35 Jason Cummings ON 67, 20 Steve Morison ON 84, 19 Ryan Barnett

Attendance – 4084 (429 Shrewsbury)

Referee; G Salisbury





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Ticket News

Max O'Leary Pre AFC Wimbledon

13 September 2019

Shot stopper Max O'Leary shares his thoughts ahead of Saturday's Sky Bet League One trip to AFC Wimbledon.

22-year-old Max talks to the press after having not played for almost two weeks due to the International break. "We didn't actually have too much time off because we were in training which I think was a good thing. But we just want to get back out and play, it's been nearly two weeks since we had a game so we're looking forward to the game on Saturday." Max said.

Town have one of the best defensive records in the league so far with conceding only one against MK Dons and three at Ipswich. Max is impressed with the start. He said; "It's been a good start overall. We've had a few clean sheets and haven't conceded many goals, bar Ipswich which didn't help that record. But I think it's been a good start so far and as a defensive unit, we're happy."

Max is on a season-long loan from Championship side Bristol City. Max has had to adapt the way Town are playing at the back. "It's a change for me, I've come from playing four at the back last year to playing three at the back this year. It's good personnel, we all get on well on the pitch and off the pitch. We've got a good understanding too."

The International break has helped Town to rest and recuperate, allowing players such as Ollie Norburn and Ro-Shaun Williams to come back into training. "It has been beneficial. We had a weekend where we had no game, but we still had the cup game during the week. So, the boys that needed minutes, got them. We've worked hard over the last four to five days and it has been a really good bonding time for us, like a mini pre-season. With a lot of hard work and we've got two new faces in as well, so to get them integrated into the group, it's been good, and I think it has been beneficial."

Town's two new strikers, Callum Lang and Jason Cummings will both be involved in Town's game at Wimbledon. Max tells us how well they have both settled in. "They both bring different aspects to our game and the way that we can play. Langy's young and got a lot of energy and he's a good finisher. Jase is experienced, he's played a lot of games and he brings a different dynamic. They're both looking sharp and that's good for us."

Wimbledon have had a tough start to the season and losing to their rivals, MK Dons. "We go out with the same attitude and mindset. We look to go out and win every game whether you do that in a different way against one team, then another, then that maybe it. I don't think that there should be that sort of changed mindset for us."

Max turns 23 next month and at this age with being on loan at Town and it being his very first league loan move, he says it is very important. "We were looking to do it last year, but circumstances changed things and it wasn't meant to be. I got a few games at Bristol City, so this is my first league loan and it's an important stage for me. So far, I'm enjoying it and settling in well."

Town's number one for this season is Max and with the form that he is in, he has a bright future ahead. "Everyone looks to go out on loan and play games. That's what I'm looking to do. Murph's here as well and he pushes me all the way. He's a great trainer from what I've seen. He's experienced and there's a lot I can learn from him, different bits I can take and try to adapt and take it into my game."

Max is eligible to play for Republic of Ireland after his Grandad, on his dads' side, is Irish. In summer, Max had the chance to go out and train with ROI after being noticed by them. "I went out and trained in the summer. I went for a few days and trained in Portugal with them. I've spoken to Mick about it and he just said if you want to try and be eligible to play for Ireland then we can try and make that happen. I went out and trained, it was a good experience for me, and I knew a few people out there which made it easier."

"I don't have an Irish accent; my Grandad is Irish. He was born there, and he does have an Irish accent, I know that doesn't mean anything." Max jokes.

Town will look to return home on Saturday with all three points. "We've got a good squad; everything is in place here. We've got a good squad, good manager, coaching staff and everyone around the club seems to be a good fit. Hopefully, we can get some more good results and climb up the table."


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