Search

AFC Wimbledon verdict: Jolley may top the list of Dons exits as Ardley looks to strengthen

09:07 31 December 2012

AFC Wimbledon manager Neal Ardley. Picture: Nick Potts/PA Wire

AFC Wimbledon manager Neal Ardley. Picture: Nick Potts/PA Wire

PA Wire/Press Association Images

League Two: AFC Wimbledon 0 Oxford United 3

The fact that Wimbledon fans were digging deep into their pockets on Saturday for a bucket collection to provide manager Neal Ardley with additional transfer funds in the January window underlines the depth of the Dons’ current plight.

Wimbledon hit rock bottom on Saturday – now occupying 92nd and last place of the proud pantheon of Football League clubs. The Dons are proud of their astonishing nine year rise from deep within non-League to join the elite, and plans as to their long term future – including a move back to Wimbledon – are surely being put on hold at present as all funds head towards preserving their League Two status.

“I’ve defended the players in the past, but I’m certainly not going to today” fumed Ardley after Wimbledon crashed 3-0 at home to mid-table Oxford, their eighth home defeat in twelve games this season. “We need lots of warriors in this team, and there’s too many of my players who I don’t think are in this fight. If they can’t take on information and can’t realise what they need to do on the pitch then they shouldn’t be playing for us.

“Oxford’s two centre-halves bullied our centre-forwards in the first half, their centre-forwards bullied our centre-halves. It’s not a great platform to start from. It won’t be easy, but we need to win ten games before the end of the season.”

First to exit the Wimbledon door in order to free up space for new signings is likely to be winger Christian Jolley, mercurial in a five game loan spell for Newport County, but an irrelevant substitute on Saturday.

“There’s a couple of clubs sniffing around Jolls, and if it’s the right thing for him and he’s not going to be a regular starter here, then there is a chance that he will move on” added the Wimbledon manager.

Wimbledon gained many plaudits for the way they played at Milton Keynes at the start of the month in a televised FA Cup game, but that has been comfortably their best recent performances in recent weeks. Given the choice between beating their Buckinghamshire rivals or remaining in the League, Dons fans wouldn’t have to take long to come to a quick judgement.

Oxford dominated the first half and swept into a two goal lead with a close range finish from Sean Rigg and a header from the superb Alfie Potter, previously on loan at AFC Wimbledon. The home side rallied at the start of the second period and were unlucky not to get a goal back, but Oxford hit a suckerpunch third on the break, Tom Craddock steering past Neil Sullivan after a horrible backpass header by Stacy Long.

AFC Wimbledon: Sullivan, Osano, Antwi, Mambo, Cummings, Yusseff (Jolley), Ajala (Kiernan), Long, Meades, Midson, McCallum (Prior)

Attendance 4,401 (745 from Oxford)

Man of the match: Toby Ajala

Related articles

0 comments

Latest Sport Stories

05:00
Harry Kane. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Mauricio Pochettino may hand Harry Kane his first Premier League start of the season at Aston Villa, but it would be nothing to do with the pressure from the supporters.

Eric Dier

Eric Dier admits it has been a steep learning curve in the Premier League and that he has made mistakes – but the 20-year-old is thrilled to have been so heavily involved for Tottenham since his arrival.

Jan Vertonghen (right) in action against Brighton at White Hart Lane last night

Lifting the Capital One Cup could be the key to unlocking Tottenham’s potential, giving them a winning mentality and providing the spark that takes the club on to bigger things, according to Jan Vertonghen.

Thu, 09:00
Nils Mordt in action for Saracens. Pic by Christopher Lee/Getty Images

Nils Mordt is looking forward to taking to the field with Saracens’ young stars as they kick off their LV= Cup campaign with a London derby against Harlequins on Sunday.

Most read sport

“Space is hard and today was a tough day.”

One pilot is dead and another seriously injured after the craft exploded over the Mojave desert.

One pilot has died and another is seriously injured after a rocket belonging to billionaire Sir Richard Branson’s space tourism venture crashed during a test flight. Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo rocket came down in the Mojave Desert in California. An eyewitness reported that the craft exploded in flight after ignition. A Virgin Galactic spokesman said the […]

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Hampstead & Highgate Express e-edition today E-edition