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Match Reports

AFC Wimbledon Preview

1 March 2014

Fleetwood 0-0 AFC Wimbledon


As a result, Fleetwood remain sixth in Sky Bet League 2 with 13 games to go – the next being a rearranged fixture at Newport County on Tuesday.

Town boss Graham Alexander made five changes to the side which fell to a 4-0 defeat against Plymouth Argyle earlier in the week.

Bobby Grant, on loan from Blackpool, made his first start in the Fleetwood shirt while Alan Goodall, Stewart Murdoch, Mikael Mandron and Jon Parkin, for his 50th Cod Army appearance, all came into the line-up.

Gareth Evans, Alex Marrow, Matty Hughes, Jamille Matt and the injured Steven Schumacher were the five who dropped out.

And looking for a good response to Tuesday night’s disappointing defeat, Town started on the attack with Mandron the first to go close when his low, left-foot strike from outside the box was parried around the near post by Ross Worner.

Antoni Sarcevic then forced Worner to save again after 20 minutes when he played a one-two with Mandron before placing the ball into the Wombles’ goalkeeper’s hands.

Neal Ardley’s dogged side denied Mandron the chance to slide Parkin in moments later while, at the other end, the Dons’ Luke Moore and Michael Collins combined before Moore’s low shot flew into Maxwell’s hands.

There was an unfortunate injury to new loan signing Grant on his Fleetwood debut and, as a result, he was replaced by Josh Morris, on loan from Blackburn Rovers, for his second Town appearance.

The Cod Army could not find the breakthrough before half-time although there was a clear-cut opening for Town after the break when Charlie Taylor drilled the ball into the penalty area from deep.

Sarcevic in the box, who brought the ball under control six yards out, blasted his strike on the volley over with the offside flag being raised anyway, though.

Chances were few and far between heading towards the hour mark and Harry Pell’s deflected strike off Mark Roberts fortunately flew safely into Maxwell’s hands.

Alexander introduced Tuesday’s man of the match Hughes with less than 25 minutes to go in place of Mandron.

However, the visitors had another attempt when Luke Moore cut in from the right before firing wide of the far post.

And Town were fortunate when Charlie Sheringham, the son of Teddy, struck over Maxwell’s crossbar on the edge of the box after Sammy Moore’s pullback.

Fleetwood struggled to find a way through the Wombles’ defence but their best chance came from a corner kick, when Sarcevic’s in-swinging corner from the left was headed wide at the far post by the unmarked Pond.

Town piled the pressure on in four added minutes, but there was no way past Neal Ardley’s side in the push for promotion.

FLEETWOOD: (5-3-2) Maxwell; McLaughlin, Pond, Goodall, Roberts (c), Taylor; Sarcevic, Murdoch, Grant (Morris, 38); Mandron (M. Hughes, 66), Parkin (Matt, 81).

SUBS: Davies, Jordan, Marrow, Evans, Morris, M. Hughes, Matt.

BOOKED: Morris.

MAN OF THE MATCH: Pond.

WIMBLEDON: (3-5-2) Worner; Jones, Morris (Pell, 32), Antwi, Richards; Fuller (c), S. Moore, L. Moore, Collins, Richards; Hylton (Wyke, 61), Sheringham (Sainte-Luce, 84).

SUBS: Midson, Pell, Fenlon, Sainte-Luce, Brown, Wyke, Nicholson.

ATTENDANCE: 2,420.


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