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16 March 2019 Venue Roots Hall Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

Big Preview: Southend United vs AFC Wimbledon

15 March 2019

Southend United vs AFC Wimbledon...

Southend boss Chris Powell has called the visit of AFC Wimbledon on Saturday the “biggest game” of the season as Blues look to ease their relegation fears with three points tomorrow afternoon.

Following Tuesday’s collapse at Scunthorpe, Blues are now without a win in nine matches and with Powell’s side just two points above the drop they know tomorrow is almost a must win.

In their way are basement side AFC Wimbledon, but don’t be fooled by the Dons’ position in the table. Despite sitting bottom, a resurgent Dons are third in the form guide with four wins from six.

Back-to-back wins over Doncaster and Peterborough have put Wimbledon in reach of safety having looked dead and buried not so long ago, and they’ll not want Southend to dent their momentum. 

Southend United: LDLDDL

AFC Wimbledon: WWDLWW

24th November 2018: AFC Wimbledon (Oshilaja, Pinnock) 2 vs 1 (Trotter OG) Southend United

1st January 2018: AFC Wimbledon (Trotter, Soares) 2 vs 0 Southend United

26th September 2017: Southend United (Demetriou) 1 vs 0 AFC Wimbledon

Goalkeeper Mark Oxley is back in contention for Blues after he returned to training having been out with a persistent back problem which has kept the Yorkshireman out since mid-December.

Defender John White is also in the frame for a return after he too returned to training midweek while Chris Powell decides on whether to throw Rob Kiernan back in after scoring at Blackpool.

Striker Stephen Humphrys had a successful operation on a facial injury picked up against Accrington with Blues waiting to see how he responds to rehabilitation before discussing his return.

Kwesi Appiah will be pushing for a place in the Dons squad after recovering from a hamstring injury which has kept the Ghanaian international out for a total of seven games.

Deli Oshilaja and Rod McDonald were doubtful for the midweek game against Peterborough and didn’t feature and they’ll both be looking to make a return from foot and groin injuries respectively. 

Chris Powell, Southend United Manager:

“They’re still in a precarious position and they will be fighting – we’ve almost got to fight fire with fire in many ways because they’ll be coming to try and carry on the run they’re on.

“We understand how it is, but like them, two games ago, it wasn’t like that and all of a sudden it’s changed for them. We’ve still got to believe that will happen for us and I’m confident it will.

“We have been close on many occasions but not close enough and I know we can do that. I know the task that lies ahead may be very daunting off the back of what’s happened but we know it can quickly change and that’s what we have to believe in.”

Wally Downes, AFC Wimbledon Manager:

“Well we’re in a tough position. We’ve just got to keep plugging away and getting the results – what will be will be.

“It’s not as though you can sort of plan and strategize that perhaps if we get a point here and then we’ve got a tough away game and we can get a point there, and get them home and get three – no.

"We’ve got to win every game. We’ve got to approach every game like a cup final and try and certainly win the first half if we can, if we can’t [then] win the second half but, in the end, we’ve got to win the games.”

 

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Match Reports

Match Report: Southend 0-1 Wimbledon

16 March 2019

Southend’s desperate form continued as they suffered a 1-0 defeat at home to AFC Wimbledon, with a goal from Joe Pigott extending Blues’ winless run to 10 matches.

As the wind of Storm Gareth whipped around Roots Hall, first-half chances were at a premium, with Michael Turner going closest with his header that was tipped over by Aaron Ramsdale.

Stephen McLaughlin then saw the best chance of the game go begging after the interval as he was put clean through only for a last-ditch block from Toby Sibbick to stop the Irishman.

And almost immediately Blues were made to pay for that missed chance with a defensive mix-up between Michael Turner and Mark Oxley allowing Joe Pigott to steal in and slide the visitors in front.   

Southend pushed but couldn’t find an equaliser as Dons recorded their third win in a row to take them off the bottom of the table while putting Blues further in trouble.

Ahead of kick-off, boss Chris Powell described the game against Dons as the biggest game of the season and Blues knew that this afternoon would almost be a must-win following a run of nine games without a win, which had seen Southend drop to just two points above the relegation zone.

The visitors Wimbledon were entrenched in the relegation zone themselves, propping up the League One table, but they were in resurgent form thanks to a run of four wins from their last six, including back-to-back home victories against promotion-chasers Doncaster and Peterborough.

Powell made three changes from the side that fell apart against Scunthorpe in midweek and Blues carved out the first clear opening of the game when Harry Bunn wrestled control of the ball on the edge of the penalty area before dragging his shot wide.

In a game short on quality, thanks in part to the blustery conditions caused by Storm Gareth, Southend went close to taking the lead midway through the half when a Michael Turner header was superbly tipped over the crossbar by Dons ‘keeper Aaron Ramsdale.

One of Powell’s three changes, Mark Oxley - who was making his 100th Blues appearance – was forced into his first meaningful action by two former Southend players, parrying Anthony Wordsworth’s free-kick before claiming Joe Pigott’s bundled effort on the rebound.

It would remain goalless at the break, but Blues will feel they could have done better with a counter-attack right on the stroke of half-time as Stephen McLaughlin slid Simon Cox in but the Southend skipper couldn’t pick out a blue shirt in the box as the referee’s whistle blew.

With the wind at their backs second-half, Wimbledon enjoyed their best spell of the game after the break and went close to opening the scoring in front of their travelling fans when Michael Folivi was found at the far post only for his half-volley to be blocked by Sam Hart.

Blues had been second best after the interval, but they had the clearest chance of either side to score before the hour mark when McLaughlin went clean through. The Irishman though hesitated long enough for Toby Sibbick to block his shot before Terell Thomas cleared the ball off the line.

And Southend would be made to pay for not taking that opportunity in front of goal as a defensive lapse led to Dons opening the scoring. A long ball from the back caused a mix-up between Turner and Oxley, allowing Pigott to steal in, with the striker sliding the ball in to put the visitors in front.

The former Blues hero, who so memorably scored the equaliser at Wembley which helped Blues reach League One, had inflicted a potentially fatal blow to Southend’s chances of staying in the division while keeping the Dons on course for a third straight win to take them off the bottom.  

Michael Kightly and Charlie Kelman were introduced and the youngster Kelman immediately had an opportunity to level the game but his shot lacked the power needed to trouble Ramsdale in goal as Southend’s troubles increased.

Despite a late push, which saw Timothee Dieng fire well wide from distance in injury time, Blues couldn’t break down a resilient Wimbledon who secured a third straight win – without conceding a goal – leaving Southend outside the relegation zone on goal difference only.

Blues XI: Oxley, Hyam (Yearwood 87’), Turner, Dieng, Cox (C), McLaughlin (Kightly 76’), Kiernan, Demetriou, Lennon (Kelman 76’), Bunn, Hart. Subs Not Used: Bishop, Mantom, Moore, White

AFC Wimbledon XI: Ramsdale, Nightingale (C) (Watson 46’), Thomas, Wagstaff, Hartigan, Seddon, Sibbick, Kalambayi, Pigott (Pinnock 87’), Wordsworth, Folivi (Connolly 70’). Subs Not Used: McDonnell, Barcham, McLoughlin, Rudoni

Referee: Brett Huxtable

Assistants: Paul Graham & Andrew Williams

Fourth Official: Michael Webb

Scorers:

Southend United: None

AFC Wimbledon: Joe Pigott 67’

Yellow Cards:

Southend United: Sam Hart 79’

AFC Wimbledon: Anthony Wordsworth 52’

Attendance: 7,570 (748 Away)

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Ticket News

Be Part Of It Against The Dons

15 March 2019

Southend United's next match at Roots Hall sees them take on AFC Wimbledon...

Chris Powell's side will be looking to bounce back from their 4-1 defeat to Scunthorpe on Tueday and get back to winning ways in front of the home support.

AFC Wimbledon come into the game at the bottom of the table, results have slowly been going their way, they defeated Peterborough 1-0 in midweek, and like Blues are aiming to pick up as many crucial points as possible.

The visit of the Dons will bring back some familiar faces with Anthony Wordsworth, Joe Pigott, and Mitchell Pinnock all regular starters in Wally Downes' squad and we are sure to see them in action once again.

Get your tickets in advance for the game and SAVE money. Come on down to Roots Hall and show your support for Powell's Blue Army!

A ticket pricing list can be found by clicking here.

Purchase tickets for the game from the Blues Box Office, Online or by calling 08444 770077.

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