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Wednesday 31 March 2004
first team news
Squad named

NICKY English has named the following squad for tonight's game:


Ross Standen, Steve Gibson, Danny Oakins, Matt Everard, Jamie Angell, Darren Dobinson, Lewis Taylor, Paul Quinn, Gareth Graham, George Snee, Andy Sullivan, Seb Favata, Gavin Bolger, Shane Small King, Jones Bamfo, Jamie Taylor.


The acting manager explained:
"Kevin Cooper has got a slight strain on his hamstring, so we've decided to rest him. We have a few games in quick succession and, although we're awaiting clarification on the rules, we could be short of strikers for the semi-final. Danny Oakins is back, which is good news, but Lee Sidwell and Simon Basey are still injured. Ryan Gray has a bruised ankle after Southall, so we'll probably have another good look at George Snee. Ginge has come in as cover. "


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Wednesday 31 March 2004
first team news
Nicky's thoughts on the day of Horley enocunter

Looking back to the previous game at Southall, Nicky believes that the Dons have overcome one of the toughest remaining hurdles:


"As we've said, it can be hard to raise yourself for every game when you keep winning. And we expected Southall to be a tough test. So we tried to get them fired up and I think that result against a team in third place has pretty much won us the league. The noise from the fans there was fantastic, as the players came off I think people really showed their appreciation of the achievement.


"Jamie Taylor and Cooper did ever so well. Taylor gets up and competes for headers. He may not win them, but by getting up it means that centre backs can't direct their header. He worked so hard for us. And Cooper did too, he was excellent as well and I was really pleased with him. His goal was really important for us at a key time and very well taken and created.

"It was great to see Lewis get a goal as well. He's only 17, he's been here mostly as a centre half, but he played centre midfield at Fulham and he took that chance very calmly. He didn't snatch at it, he finished it properly, took it down with a great touch and rolled it in. He's going to grow into a great player, wherever he ends up playing! Steve Gibson proved as well that he's an exceptional player. He can go as far as he wants to - he's got touch and pace and he can tackle and head the ball. He just needs to work on decision making but he was immense for us.


"And Seb and Gav were absolutely superb in the middle. They worked hard, shut down and then created chances. There's a fair bit of competition when everyone else is fit again, but if they keep playing like that, they really have the places in hand. So it was a great all round display and we look to do it all again tonight for the home crowd."


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Sunday 28 March 2004
first team news
Paul Scott leaves

NICKY English confirmed yesterday afternoon that Paul Scott has left the club. The acting manager explained:


"We've taken a good look at Paul Scott in four or five games recently and I felt that in all honesty other players were ahead of him in the pecking order for strikers. I discussed the situation with him and it was clear he was unhappy with that. It was agreed by mutual consent that he leave the club to try his luck elsewhere. He did a lot for us and is a good player, so we wish him all the best in the future."


Scott made 31 appearances for the Dons, starting 12 games, with 19 more as substitute, scoring 11 goals.


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Friday 26 March 2004
first team news
Squad named

Nicky English has named the following squad for tomorrow's match against Cobham at The Fans' Stadium - Kingsmeadow:

Ross Standen, Matt Martin, Steve Gibson, Lewis Taylor, Danny Oakins, Jamie Angell, Paul Quinn, Darren Dobinson, Andy Sullivan, Lee Sidwell, Seb Favata, Ryan Gray, George Snee, Jones Bamfo, Paul Scott, Kevin Cooper.

Nicky explained his inclusions:
"I've had a long chat with Danny and he's says he's fine to play, so he's in the squad and we'll give him a fitness test tomorrow morning. He says his leg is stiff but he's played with worse, so we'll see how it is. Jamie Angell has been brought into the squad as cover for him if he's not up to it.

"Noel Frankum has dropped down to the reserves because I felt Wednesday showed he's lacking match fitness. It's not fair to expect him to come in for a match every five or six weeks and judge him on those performances, so we'll look to get him a few more games in the reserves to get some sharpness.

"Conversely, Jones Bamfo has stepped up and will have a role to play, especially if Scotty is still struggling with his foot. He's been impressive for the reserves lately and I know he's a good player.

"Finally, George Snee is on the bench. He's spent the last five years of his life in pro football, and I've actually seen him twice myself in games a while back, once against my nephew Alex Tapp and once against Stephen Sidwell. He was a good player then, with plenty of pace, so once he's had a chance to see what we're about and the pace of the game, we'll look to get him involved."

Nicky also commented on reports in the press that the club are chasing ex-Aldershot front man Jamie Taylor:
"Jamie Taylor came down and watched us on Wednesday. He's playing a Sussex County game tomorrow and after that, we hope to find out whether or not he's interested in joining us. I know some other clubs are interested in him, so we wait to find out his decision. Where George is a more of a wide man, Jamie is as out-and-out striker."

Taylor is 21 years old and was released by Aldershot last month after scoring 12 times in 37 appearances.




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Friday 26 March 2004
club news
Southall details

ENGINEERING works on the weekend of 27/28 March will disrupt our fans going to the game at Chesham against Southall. There will be no Metropolitan Line service between Rickmansworth and Chesham or Amersham. A replacement bus service will run instead. In addition, there will be no Chiltern overland rail service between Marylebone and Amersham. Chiltern passengers are being advised to use the Underground and get on the bus at Rickmansworth.

The replacement buses will run from Rickmansworth to Amersham and Chesham and will be departing every 15 minutes. Please be aware that some buses will be running to Amersham only (although there are numerous scheduled bus services that run between Amersham and Chesham should you board this particular bus).

Ticket prices for the match will be 7 for adults, 4 for concessions and 2 for U16s.

After proving very popular last year, there will once more be a curry tent at the match.



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Friday 26 March 2004
club news
Coney Hall match set

THE club was this morning officially told by the CCL committee that the Premier Challenge Cup semi-final against Coney Hall will be played at Sutton United's Gander Green Lane on Thursday 8 April, with a 7.45 kick-off.

Ticket prices and further details are yet to be agreed and will be announced on here as soon as they are known.



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Friday 26 March 2004
first team news
Small-King signs

FOLLOWING the club's seven day approach, Shane Small-King has decided to join the Dons from AFC Wallingford. He will be eligible for the reserves on Saturday, with his SHL clearance coming through by next week's home game against Horley Town.

Acting Manager Nicky English explained:
"Once we had permission from Wallingford, I spoke to Shane and I'm delighted to say that he's decided to come down and join us. At first he was a little worried about the possibility of coming down till the end of the season, but not being required after that if a new manager came in. But I said that you probably only get one chance to join this club and it's better to have loved and lost than not to have tried at all! He agreed with that, so he should be cleared in time to play for the reserves on Saturday."


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Friday 26 March 2004
first team news
Injury update

John Harris gave us this update on the situation of three of the injured players:

Lee Sidwell
In a recent game Lee accidentally kicked an opponent?s heel. He has strained a tendon in his big toe. Although Lee played some games the injury was not making progress because of the trauma of playing. Therefore he is receiving treatment and will not be available until the injury has entirely cleared.

Simon Bassey
Simon received a first degree sprain to his knee ligaments in the game against Coney Hall. It was not severe enough for him to be taken off, and he has responded well to treatment. I do not expect him to be fit until the Horley game at least.

Danny Oakins.
Danny has an ankle injury along the joint line, which is particularly painful. He is receiving treatment but it is difficult to give Nicky an accurate assessment of when we could expect Danny back.




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Friday 26 March 2004
reserve team news
Squad named

The reserves are away to Molesey with a 3pm kick-off and anyone who isn't able to trek across to London to Chesham is encouraged to go down and support Dave Wager's side. His squad will include:

Matt Martin, Keith Ward, Sam Elliott, Ken During, Gareth Graham, Noel Frankum, Joe Hill, Rob Hill, James Earp, Andy Trefry, Shane Small-King, Micky Fernandes, Dwayne Townsend.




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Friday 26 March 2004
first team news
Squad named

WITH Danny Oakins, Joe Sheerin, Simon Bassey and Lee Sidwell injured and Paul Scott unavailable, acting manager Nicky English has named the following squad for tomorrow's trip to third-placed Southall:

Ross Standen, Steve Gibson, Matt Everard, Jamie Angell, Lewis Taylor, Paul Quinn, Darren Dobinson, Andy Sullivan, George Snee, Gavin Bolger, Seb Favata, Ryan Gray, Jones Bamfo, Kevin Cooper, Jamie Taylor.

Nicky explained:
"We've decided to go with four on the bench because we have a lot of injuries at the moment. Matt Martin is playing for the reserves as Ray Merry is injured. It'll be a very difficult game ? I think it's another Wallingford style situation for us. They are a very strong side in player power and they've got a lot of pace ? they think they should be higher than third and this is the game they have been waiting for.

"They drew 2-2 with Horley in the week, but I know that the players will have had an eye on this game. Everyone is dying to be the first team to beat us and it will be a real battle. It's hard for us at the moment, not just because of the injuries, but because the pitches aren't as good as they have been. So we have to show we have other qualities. When we can't play passing football as much, we have to show we can battle when we need to.

"We've had two boosts this week. Shane Small-King has signed and will be playing for the reserves. He'll want to show what he can do, so I wouldn't be surprised to hear he scores a couple tomorrow. Secondly, George Snee has told me he's committed to playing for us, which is an added bonus. He was talking to Stevenage as well earlier, but he's decided to concentrate on getting a place here. So we'll try to have a proper look at him in a position that suits him, but we know with his CV he could be a very useful player for us if it all works out."

The match will be played at Chesham United FC and kick off at 3 pm.




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Thursday 25 March 2004
club news
AFCW plc 6 month results

To download the AFCW plc 6 month results as a PDF file click here (141kb)

Adobe Acrobat 4.0 or higher version is need to view this .pdf document. Download the latest version here.


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Monday 22 March 2004
first team news
Sheerin sidelined

CLUB captain, Joe Sheerin, saw consultant surgeon Mr. Martin Bircher on Tuesday regarding the knee injury sustained in the game against Godalming & Guildford on the Saturday before last. Mr. Bircher confirmed John Harris's opinion that Joe had torn the medial collateral ligament, but called for an MRI scan to confirm the possibility of a torn cartilage.

On Thursday, Mr. Bircher told Joe that there was no tear to the cartilage, and, therefore, an operation called a meniscotomy was unnecessary. However, there was a tear to one of his quadriceps muscles. This tear, along with the torn ligaments, is making Joe's knee unstable and painful. Joe has been fitted for a knee brace which he has to wear for two weeks before seeing Mr. Bircher again on 6 April.

When given the "all-clear" by Mr. Bircher, John Harris and Paul Braham will start Joe's rehabilitation. However, we should expect Joe to be unavailable for at least six weeks.



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Monday 22 March 2004
first team news
Frimley squad named

NICKY English has named the following squad for tomorrow's trip to play Frimley Green in Camberley:

Matt Martin, Ross Standen, Steve Gibson, Matt Everard, Jamie Angell, Lewis Taylor, Sam Elliott, Paul Quinn, Darren Dobinson, Andy Sullivan, Seb Favata, Gavin Bolger, Ryan Gray, Paul Scott, Kevin Cooper, Jamie Taylor.

Nicky explained:
"We have six players out for this game. Joe people know about, but Lee Sidwell has got a bruised toe, Danny Oakins has an injured ankle and Simon Bassey has problems with his knee. Gareth Graham is suspended, of course. Finally, Noel Frankum is unavailable because he has to go to a parents' evening.

"But we've still got more than enough to win the game and it's a chance for people to come in and show what they can do. It'll be a good game. The new manager they've brought in down there came from the Aldershot academy and he's taken three or four players who didn't quite make it at Aldershot down with him, so it'll be a tougher test than the game at Kingsmeadow."

And Nicky has made an approach to add one more player to his squad before next week's registration deadline:
"We put in a seven day approach to AFC Wallingford last week to speak to Shane Small-King. That deadline has now gone and I hope to speak to him today or tomorrow. There's a couple of reasons to make an approach for him ? one of them is that we will of course be missing Joe for six weeks and Shane is capable of holding the ball up in that role. He's also able to play on he left or right or behind the front two, so if we look to try to play with a three up front, then he'd be able to do that. He's looked impressive in games against us, so we'll make him an offer and see if he wants to come down here and join us."

Nicky doesn't expect any more new faces at the club until the summer:
"That'll be it for now. We have enough quality in the squad to see us through as we look to secure the league and hopefully the cup. It's not possible to bring anyone else in until the manager situation is sorted ? whoever gets the job full-time will be able to start sorting out the squad for next year."

Fans driving to the game tomorrow may like to know the following directions:
On the M3, come off at Junction 4 and follow signs to Frimley, then take the B3411 towards Camberley. The ground is on the left opposite "The Standard" pub. There will be no parking in the ground and fans are advised to park in the nearby Bridge Road industrial estate, from where there will be direct access to the ground.

The address is Krooner Park, Krooner Road, Frimley Road, Camberley, Surrey, GU15 2QP


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Friday 19 March 2004
reserve team news
Reserve fixtures

The following reserve team fixtures have been confirmed for the forthcoming weeks:

League:
Saturday 20th March - Tonbridge Angels (H)
Saturday 27th March - Molesey (A)
Saturday 3rd April - Camberley Town (H)
Saturday 10th April - Walton Casuals (A)
Tuesday 13th April - Bracknell (H)

Surrey Premier Cup:
Monday 22nd March - Walton & Hersham (A) - Semi Final

This Saturday's home match against Tonbridge will be played at Hampton & Richmond's ground, with a 3pm kick off.


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Friday 19 March 2004
club news
Club statement

Late on Thursday Bromley FC published a statement on their official web site which included the following statements "(Bromley FC) had a verbal agreement with AFC Wimbledon that they once again would be providing adequate stewarding for their supporters" and "Bromley Football Club is disappointed that other parties have sought to distance themselves from events and point accusing fingers at everyone else instead of accepting part of the blame and looking to learn from mistakes that were made."

We in turn are very disappointed to read this statement. We had not planned to comment further on Tuesday night's events until we had completed our investigations into all the issues surrounding the abandonment of the match. However, in the light of Bromley's statement, we feel we must clarify the situation. The facts are as follows.

Coney Hall FC were responsible for crowd safety at this match, although we understand that they subcontracted this to Bromley as part of the ground hire arrangements.

Bromley asked for support in running the game and we passed them to a volunteer group of AFCW fans. These fans do not act as stewards but take an unpaid role as marshals. They are not employed by AFCW in respect of away games and do not report to or represent the club at such games. They liaised directly with Bromley and we understand that they agreed that they would provide five marshals to help. They did not ask for, and were not offered, any payment. They made it very clear to Bromley that, as marshals, they would not be able to carry out typical stewarding duties such as manning fire gates, bag searches and, in particular, they would not be responsible or get involved if any disturbance arose. Their role was to help AFCW fans in any way they could and in particular to stand with them and encourage good behaviour.

When the first marshal arrived well before the game he found that Bromley had provided only three stewards, which was far below the level of stewarding that they had promised. (For a game of this type at Kingsmeadow, AFC Wimbledon would typically have over 20 stewards and marshals and between 2 and 6 police present.)

Although most ground safety certificates require a named Safety Officer to be present there appeared to be no-one with that role. As a result, there was no clear chain of command for stewarding. A further problem was that the Bromley stewards had no radios and therefore no adequate means of communicating. (This problem was exacerbated during the first half when the tannoy stopped working, leaving no way of communicating with the crowd in the event of any problems.)

The marshal phoned Luke Mackenzie, chief steward at AFC Wimbledon home matches, to express these concerns and also to report that spectators were to be allowed to take alcohol out of the bar and in sight of the playing area, which is not good practice. At about 5.30, Luke spoke on the telephone to a Coney Hall official and they agreed that this practice would not be allowed.

In view of all these factors, the marshals, who we should remember are all volunteers, decided that Bromley FC had abrogated most of their responsibility for safety at the game and they were not willing to work in such dangerous conditions. Therefore, they did not take up their roles and informed Luke Mackenzie on his arrival at the game, shortly before kick off.

Despite his earlier phone call, Luke found that alcohol was being taken out of the bar and this continued throughout the game. Furthermore, canned beer was being sold; some of the cans were later thrown onto the pitch. The sale of canned beer was later stopped, only after an AFCW director insisted. Many people also commented on the number of apparently under age spectators who were drinking alcohol.

Because of his major concerns about crowd safety, Luke enlisted the help of Erik Samuelson, the AFCW director who has overall responsibility for safety at Kingsmeadow. Erik immediately rang his police contacts and asked for a police presence. He then spoke to a Bromley official to express his serious concerns, since an incident seemed almost unavoidable. At half time, Luke and Erik spoke to the referee to explain their concerns and to discuss the options. No Bromley official was present at the meeting and we understand that no-one from Bromley spoke to the match officials at any time before or during the game.

Despite having no direct responsibility for safety at the game, all three AFC Wimbledon directors and several fans who often act as marshals then went into the crowd in an attempt to calm the atmosphere. While helping in this way, Ivor Heller, an AFCW director, was injured in the disturbances. At no time was there any sign of assistance or action by Bromley officials.

AFC Wimbledon are assessing the lessons to be learned from the events of Tuesday night and we have already stated our intention to take very strong action against any AFCW fans who might be proved to have been actively involved in the disturbances. We regret that Bromley FC are attempting to place responsibility on AFCW when our officials and fans worked hard to reduce the risk on the night when the most basic security and safety measures at the game had manifestly not been implemented.

Finally, the club would like to make it clear that, in line with normal practice for league cup games, we received no proceeds from the game.


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Wednesday 17 March 2004
club news
Club statement

Following the game against Coney Hall at Bromley FC last night, the club has issued the following statement:

"Last night's game was abandoned in extra time by the referee because of crowd disturbances and a lack of adequate stewarding to deal with them. Because we believe that the safety of fans, players and officials is paramount, we fully support this decision. Crowd safety at the game was the responsibility of Coney Hall, as the home club, and Bromley FC, as the host club. Nonetheless, we took the initiative to seek police assistance during the first half and spoke to the referee at half time to express our concerns about crowd safety. We also offered, and gave, practical assistance during the remainder of the game.

"As some of you may already be aware, as a result of giving this assistance, club Commercial Director Ivor Heller was injured during an incident behind the dugouts. We are pleased to report that he is recovering at home and asked us to thank everyone for their concern.

"We have offered the local police every assistance in identifying the people involved in the disturbances. If our enquiries prove that any of our fans were actively involved in any of last night's incidents, we will take very strong action. However, until all our enquiries are complete, and we have discussed the situation with the police and the league, we will not comment any further on this matter.

"We understand that the game will be replayed but we do not yet know when or where. We will publish news of this as soon as it is agreed."

In an unrelated incident, as some supporters may be aware, an elderly Bromley supporter suffered a heart attack during the first half, was resuscitated and taken to hospital. At this time, the club have been unable to find out his condition, but he was believed to be alive and in intensive care last night.


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Wednesday 17 March 2004
club news
Steward training

Chief Steward Luke Mackenzie writes:
On Saturday 20 March, the stewarding team are setting out on the road to becoming better trained and qualified. To this end, they are holding a training day, including practical demonstrations and interactive training for all current and potential stewards. The council, fire brigade and police will be involved in this event and the session will last from 11am till 3pm.

It is the intention that next year, every steward will undertake this basic training scheme, and progress through the Football Steward Qualification (FSQ) as they attend more sessions, ultimately leading to a fully trained steward team, which would meet standards set for league clubs.

Anyone wishing to take part in this event and join the stewarding team for the remainder of this season or next year, please drop an email to: stewarding@afcwimbledon.co.uk


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Tuesday 16 March 2004
first team news
Semi-final squad announced

NICKY English has named the following squad for tonight's Premier Challenge Cup semi-final against Coney Hall at Bromley FC:

Ross Standen, Matt Martin, Steve Gibson, Matt Everard, Danny Oakins, Paul Quinn, Jamie Angell, Darren Dobinson, Andy Sullivan, Lee Sidwell, Simon Bassey, Seb Favata, Gavin Bolger, Ryan Gray, Paul Scott, Kevin Cooper.

And the acting manager is expecting a tough game:
"This is the first semi-final for the first team of this club and, of course, we're confident we can go through. But the team needs to realise we can't be complacent and we won't win without competing. Southall went there thinking that they'd smash a team from halfway up the league below, and within 15-20 minutes Coney Hall had worked very hard to put the game beyond them.

"On paper this is our game, this is on a par with Arsenal going to Crystal Palace. You'd expect Arsenal to win, but talk is cheap, you've got to go and do it. We know they'll have been thinking about this fixture for weeks. That will spur some people on and make others nervous. Either way, they'll play the first 20 minutes on adrenalin, which lifts them to being 20-30% better than they normally are. The key for us at the start is to keep our discipline and keep a lid on things.

"We'll take no notice of where they are in the league. We're playing a side that beat Southall 6-1 the last time they played in this competition and any side who've done that deserve the utmost respect. Everyone wants to get a final - everyone wants this club to reach the cup final. People say it's worse to lose in a semi-final than a final. I'm not sure about that, I don't want to lose in either, but I'll be doing my utmost to make sure everyone is 100% ready for a tough challenge."

The match kicks off at 7.45 pm. Tickets are 8 for adults and 4 for concessions.

Joe Sheerin, who is suspended this week, has been diagnosed by John Harris as suffering from probable ligament and cartilage damage. He will be seeing a consultant this evening and, if the diagnosis is confirmed, will probably undergo an operation this week.

Harris added:
"This continues a wretched run of luck for Joe - that's now three totally unrelated and separate injuries he's picked up though his committed style of play. He's absolutely gutted, all the more so because this latest one occurred chasing a 50-50 ball in the 92nd minute."


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Tuesday 16 March 2004
club news
Dagenham pre-season fixture announced

THE club are pleased to announce that the first pre-season friendly for this summer has been agreed and AFC Wimbledon will play Dagenham & Redbridge away on 10 July. This will be the first match of the pre-season schedule.

In order to obtain good quality fixtures to enable the manager, whoever that might be, to prepare his squad, it is necessary to start organising games now. To give the pitch the best possible chance of recovering after a season of heavy use, it is planned not to play any home friendlies at The Fans' Stadium - Kinsgmeadow until July 24.

Negotiations are ongoing for other matches, including fixtures against Football League clubs, and these will be announced on here as soon as they are confirmed.



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Monday 15 March 2004
club news
AFC Wimbledon require a part-time first team manager

AS announced in the AFC Wallingford programme, the club has advertised the position of first team manager in Friday's Non-League Paper.
To see the full advetisement, click here.


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Monday 15 March 2004
youth news
Dons kids into final

The U14 Epsom & Ewell side have won through to their league cup final and will face Croygas on Sunday April 25th at Banstead Athletic (Merland Rise).

Many congratulations to the lads.

U14 E&E Manager Ben Canham reports:

Epsom and Ewell League Cup Semi Final - U14s
AFC Wimbledon 5 - 1 Hook Youth

This match was played in swirling winds and occasional rain which made conditions difficult for both sides.

With the Dons as favourites, Hook were always going to have to start quickly. And they did. Twice Hook caused a scramble in the AFC Wimbledon box, only for big goalkeeper Jamie Henley to smother. But after only just three minutes, a huge punt upfield was left to drift over everybody. The Hook centre forward was the only player to react and side-footed into the corner of the net.

But credit to the AFC Wimbledon lads, they stepped up the pace and began using the wings. The boys were causing havoc in the Hook area every time a cross came in. After ten minutes, right midfielder Aaron Reid ran past two defenders and fired in a low cross that was tapped home by James Bailey. Then the pressure really began to mount on Hook. Just four minutes later it was 2-1 to AFC Wimbledon and the goal of the game. A ball into the area was headed away to just outside the box and Declan Connery met the dropping ball with a first time volley that flew into the top right corner. The Hook heads went down for ten minutes and AFC Wimbledon took advantage. On 19 minutes James Bailey got his second and the Dons' third, when he fed off a knockdown by top scorer Sam Manzambi, side-stepped the centre back and riffled home from 20 yards. The game was effectively killed after 24 minutes when centre back Robert Weatherhead got his first for the club when he fired home a loose ball from a corner to put the Dons 4-1 up at half time.

After the break the game was scrappy for the first five minutes, before Tom Savage and Justin Peck got hold of the ball in centre midfield. Then after 42 minutes, Peck picked up the ball 25 yards out and saw the keeper off his line. He lofted the ball perfectly to drop under the bar and put the lads 5-1 up. There were few other chances in the match, with only an Aaron Reid effort that came off the cross bar to show in the last 20 minutes.

An excellent performance if we take out the first five minutes, and a massive final to come against Croygas who are currently second behind AFC Wimbledon in the league.


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Monday 15 March 2004
club news
Gareth Graham

LAST Wednesday evening, prior to the AFC Wallingford match, an altercation took place on the pitch between Gareth Graham and a member of the coaching staff. On Friday, after discussing the incident with those involved, Chairman Kris Stewart, in full agreement with acting manager Nicky English, suspended Gareth Graham from the club for two weeks, without pay. This is the maximum penalty available under a standard player's contract, short of dismissal. The club sees no reason to take any disciplinary action against any other person.

Gareth Graham said:
"What I did on Wednesday evening was out of order and I accept that. I would like to apologise publicly to Dwight Lewis, to Nicky English and the other players and backroom staff and to the club and the fans. AFC Wimbledon have been very good to me and I have let myself and the club down. Being away for two weeks will be very hard for me, but that's the club's decision and I have to accept it."


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Friday 12 March 2004
dons trust news
Family Fun Day

ON Sunday, 16 May, AFC Wimbledon and the Dons Trust are holding the second Family Fun Day.

This time it will take place at The Fans' Stadium, Kingsmeadow. We hope this year's event will have more attractions and will be an even greater success than last year's fantastic day.

The Dons Trust Community Events Group is already planning the day and more details will appear in our matchday programme and on this website during the remainder of the season.

However, if anyone wants to help with the organization and has ideas for the day, please contact Junior Dons coordinator Roger Dennis.

Send an email to FamilyFunDay@thedonstrust.org or for those that already know Roger you can chat with him at most AFC Wimbledon home games (Roger is normally found selling golden goal tickets outside the main entrance before every home match).

It's very important for us to involve community groups and voluntary organisations from Wimbledon, Kingston and other local areas. So, please get in touch if you have contacts with any local organisations that might be interested in having a stall on the day or in taking part in some other way.

Visit the Dons Trust official website at www.thedonstrust.org



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Friday 12 March 2004
club news
Coney Hall ticket details

TICKETS for the Dons semi-final clash against Coney Hall at Bromley FC next Tuesday will be on sale on the day, priced 8 for adults and 4 for children.

The match kicks-off at 7.45pm and is not expected to sell-out, though fans are advised to get there early.

Bromley FC play at Hayes Lane, Bromley, Kent, BR2 9EF

By car: Jn 4 on M25, then A21 towards London and Orpington. At the first major roundabout, take the third exit. From there, continue going straight ahead at all roundabouts. At the third set of traffic lights, turn left, then follow the road through the width restriction and round the sweeping left-hand bend. The ground is on the left in a concealed entrance. If a mini roundabout is reached, then you've gone too far.

By train: The nearest station is Bromley South, served regularly from London Victoria. Buses 314,146 and 119 pass the ground.



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Friday 12 March 2004
first team news
Squad named

With Ross Standen unavailable and Seb Favata sidelined by flu, acting manager Nicky English has named the following squad for tomorrow's trip to Godalming & Guildford:

Matt Martin, Steve Gibson, Matt Everard, Danny Oakins, Paul Quinn, Darren Dobinson, Lee Sidwell, Gavin Bolger, George Snee, Ryan Gray, Simon Bassey, Andy Sullivan, Joe Sheerin, Paul Scott, Jamie Taylor, Kevin Cooper.

Nicky explained:
"Ross has had a long-standing commitment for tomorrow since before he joined us, so he was always going to be unavailable. Seb played on medication on Wednesday and has now been told to rest by the doctor, but he hopes to be back for the semi-final next week. Jamie Taylor will be on the bench and we'll hopefully get a chance to have a look at him at some stage, while George Snee is likely to start, so we can see what he's capable of."

And Nicky reflected on Wednesday draw against Wallingford:
"Even though we drew and that's probably enough to win the league, we're still disappointed. We wanted to win the game, of course. But we're now 13 points clear with a game in hand, so they shouldn't be able to catch us. So it wasn't a bad result, but it was a disappointing result. We have no excuses, we had our best side out and we drew the game.

"And we found some things about our side and where we're at right now. Joe wasn't 100% match fit and that's something we have to address for next year, because it really worries me. We have a lot of eggs in that basket, so to speak, and when he can't last 90 minutes, that is to the detriment of the side. That's no disrespect to Coops, who did well when he came on, but he's not a player who holds the ball up. Joe does that, which takes the pressure off people and players like him are hard to come by. Although we still made chances once he'd gone off, we didn't give ourselves respite as the game kept going backwards and forwards.

"They were a good side and I thought it was a good game to watch. If their chap had taken another ten corners, he wouldn't have put one quite on that spot again, it was a superb corner in exactly the right place for the five to head it in. So overall I was fairly happy but the young players in particular did tend to panic a little bit and whack it. They're in the side for their footballing ability, so they need to keep playing the ball more.

?The crowd were excellent ? I'd like to thank them for their support. I think that game showed the fans what they can expect next season. The club will still be looking to go straight up, but 75% of the games will be nip and tuck and exciting to watch."


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Thursday 11 March 2004
club news
Kit design chosen

THE results of the poll for next season's kit were announced last night. In total, 649 votes were cast and the club would like to thank everyone who voted.

Kit number one polled 10% of the votes, just behind kits three and four with 11% each. Kit five was the runner up with 30% of the votes, but the clear winner with 38% was kit number two.

The winning kit (shown below) was designed by Marc Jones, so congratulations to him and thanks to all the people who entered.




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Tuesday 09 March 2004
first team news
Squad named

Nicky English has named the following squad for tomorrow's top-of-the-table clash against AFC Wallingford:

Ross Standen, Steve Gibson, Danny Oakins, Matt Everard, Paul Quinn, Darren Dobinson, Lee Sidwell, Andy Sullivan, Seb Favata, Gavin Bolger, Gareth Graham, Ryan Gray, Paul Scott, Joe Sheerin, Kevin Cooper, Jones Bamfo.

Nicky explained:
"George Snee unfortunately has prior commitments. He's also at nightschool at the moment, and I knew that when we he signed forms for us last week. Lewis Taylor did excellently for us and ordinarily would have been on the bench, but he's eligible for the reserves on Thursday night in their cup match and not many people are, so he's going to play in that.

"Gareth came through 90 minutes for the reserves and scored, so it's good to have him back in the squad. And Jones Bamfo certainly earned a place on the bench again for his performance after coming on against Cobham."

The manager dropped some hints about his starting eleven:
"I expect Gavin, Matt and Joe to come back in. They are our big players. And apart from Colne, this is our biggest game of the season. If we win, it pretty much puts the league to bed. So I'll be picking the strongest 11 I have and looking to our big players to produce big performances. We're going to keep strengthening the squad, so even our best players need to stay on top of their game."

And one new face should join the club tomorrow:
"I've been speaking to Jamie Taylor and Steve Brindley has done an excellent job in encouraging him to sign. He should be signing for us tomorrow and be in the squad for Saturday. "



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Friday 05 March 2004
dons trust news
Dons Trust by-election candidate manifestos

The candidates standing for election for the vacancy on theDons Trust Board have their manifestos now published on the Dons Trust website. To read them please click here.

A reminder that a candidates surgery will be held before the home match against Cobham on Saturday 6 March starting at 1pm in the back bar.



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Thursday 04 March 2004
club news
Walking wounded

AFTER some full-blooded challenges in the Chipstead encounter, sports therapist John Harris had his hands full in the treatment room. Once he'd finished applying strappings and advising the injured players on necessary precautions, he offered the website this summary:

Joe Sheerin:
Joe injured his right ankle very early on, so it was a new and totally unrelated problem to his left knee. That, by the way, is fine. We're hoping the damage is not too serious and he could be fit for Saturday, but should definitely be in contention for the Wallingford game next Wednesday.

Danny Oakins:
Danny Oakins has suffered a sizeable haematoma to his right shin as a result of a couple of two-footed tackles. He has severe bruising and associated muscle damage and could be out for up to three weeks.

Paul Scott:
Paul Scott has a haematoma to his left shin, as well as an exacerbated foot injury. He is doubtful for Saturday.



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Thursday 04 March 2004
club news
Eire we go

Nicky English announced today that he has brought another player to the club, in the form of Irish utility man George Snee.

The 21-year-old was on Tottenham's books from the age of 16 and spent two years playing in their reserves, playing once for the first team in a pre-season friendly against Bournemouth. Capable of playing wide on either flank or in centre midfield, Snee represented Ireland at every level from U15 to U20, including going to the U16 World Championships. After being released by Tottenham this summer, he spent some time with QPR and was without a club before joining the Dons.

Nicky explained:
"The squad has really been depleted by injuries and suspensions at the moment and George is someone I was aware of ? people have told me he's a very good player. He'll probably be on the bench on Saturday and we'll take it from there."



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Wednesday 03 March 2004
first team news
Squad named

NICKY English has named the following squad for tonight's game at The Fans'Stadium - Kingsmeadow against Chipstead:

Ross Standen, Matt Martin, Steve Gibson, Danny Oakins, Lewis Taylor, Paul Quinn, Darren Dobinson, Rob Hill, Andy Sullivan, Lee Sidwell, Noel Frankum, Seb Favata, Ryan Gray, Paul Scott, Joe Sheerin, Kevin Cooper.

Matt Everard, Gavin Bolger and Simon Bassey are all suspended for today's game and Saturday's clash with Cobham.

Kick-off is at 7.45 pm. Don't forget the kits shortlisted in the design competition for next season will be on display in the main bar - go and cast your vote if you haven't done so already!



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Tuesday 02 March 2004
club news
Dons Trust Board nominations

DON'T forget the deadline to get your nomination in to stand in the Dons Trust Board by-election is this Wednesday 3 March. See the Dons Trust wesbite for further details.


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Monday 01 March 2004
club news
We've got Matt Everard

Matt Everard has turned down the chance to play for Aldershot in the Conference and committed his future to AFC Wimbledon. Aldershot made an undisclosed offer to sign the centre-back last week and the club gave him permission to speak to them, but he decided to stay with the Dons.

He explained:
"It was obviously flattering for a conference club to come in for me and to be told I'm worth paying money for! In all seriousness, it was a very hard decision to make and I've been mulling it over for a week. The decision really had nothing to do with money ? football for me is all about enjoyment and I've loved every minute of my time here so far.

"Conference football was obviously a big draw but there was no guarantee I'd enjoy my football as much there as I am here. Maybe three or four years ago my decision might have been different, but at this time I want to stay here and see how far I can go with Wimbledon. I obviously feel a lot of loyalty to the club and the fans and I want to see how high we can all go together. I'm not the kind of person who looks back with regrets and I'm confident I've made the right decision."

Acting Manager Nicky English told the official website:
"We're very pleased that at a very unsettled time in the club's short history Matt has decided to stay with us. It will have a settling effect on the club in general, the supporters and the players. It also shows how far the club has come in such a short time that our players are turning down offers from sides as good as Aldershot."

Everard has made 52 appearances for the Dons since signing from Ash United and has scored 27 goals.



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