Report by Ed Scott
Windsor & Eton Riverside, a small haven of non-league beatitude nestling in the middle of England's green and pleasant cliché. The small matter of finding the home of 'The Royals' from Riverside station proved to be somewhat difficult for many Dons fans owing to a sense of direction that would make Andy Clarke blush, possibly (just possibly) a smidgeon too much to drink, skyrocketing temperatures that made the enterprise akin to the Bataan death march and the diversions of Windsor Great Park, which was altogether too green and too pleasant. However, thanks to blind luck, the wonder of the various neon yellow WISA T-shirts being visible to the naked eye ten miles distance and the tolerance of several publicans, a good 500 odd Dons fans made it to W&E's perfectly formed ground in time for KO.
The match (played in blistering heat) still managed to be an energetic encounter (one noticeable plus was the players fitness certainly improving), with the defence looking far more solid than previous encounters. Also noticeable was the AFC debut of Kevin Cooper, who had jumped ship onto the New Dons bandwagon after being a trialist for Sutton (and running rings round his new team mates at our first ever match). Kev looked the business and looks a good bet for the season. Unfortunately AFC went down to solitary Royals strike, but defensive mistakes and midfield cohesion looked better.
And a word about the post match atmosphere and the joys of non-league football. As the sun sank into the Thames Valley, players, fans and the board mingled outside the clubhouse, ice cold beer was drunk and once again you had to pinch yourself as to how bloody marvellous this small piece of football heaven we've had carved out for ourselves by some special people really is.
Then your correspondent ruined it all by booting a post match penalty over the bar and into the biggest thistle patch this side of Slough. Even this somewhat pointed end to the day couldn't spoil an idyllic trip out west with the new Dons.