AFC Wimbledon vs Southend United...
Chris Powell’s Blues side make the short trip to Kingston upon Thames tomorrow afternoon to take on AFC Wimbledon at the Cherry Red Records Stadium.
Southend will be hoping to build on Tuesday night’s extra-time win in the Emirates FA Cup and they’ll be hopeful of getting a positive result against a Dons side who’ve been struggling of late.
Wimbledon have won just one of their last 10 league games and sit second from bottom in the table going into this weekend, level on points with basement side Bradford City.
And following Neal Ardley’s sacking a fortnight ago, interim boss Simon Bassey will be desperate to secure the Dons a much needed three points come Saturday evening.
AFC Wimbledon: LWWLLL
Southend United: WLWDLL
1st January 2018: AFC Wimbledon (Trotter, Soares) 2 vs 0 Southend United
26th September 2017: Southend United (Demetriou) 1 vs 0 AFC Wimbledon
25th March 2017: AFC Wimbledon 0 vs 2 (Ranger, Cox) Southend United
Southend will again be without centre-back Michael Turner as he serves the second of his three-game ban for a red card picked up against Blackpool last weekend.
Chris Powell will be hopeful Dru Yearwood is available having missed the Crawley tie with a hip injury, with Sam Mantom, Timothee Dieng and Luke Hyam all fit and available to slot in.
Simon Cox, who scored twice against Crawley despite being unwell, is expected to be fine for Saturday, while long-term absentees Tom Hopper, Sam Barratt and Ben Coker remain out.
AFC Wimbledon have no fresh injury concerns of their own with just the two players out of contention for Southend’s visit at the weekend.
Defender Tyler Garratt and striker James Hanson are the only absentees for Simon Bassey’s side, with the two out with a knee injury and calf injury respectively.
Chris Powell, Southend United Manager:
“We’ve had two very tough away games [against Sunderland and Barnsley] and they’re games that you look at to take something, if you take a point on the road then great. We’ve done a lot better away from home.
“Blackpool will always hurt because of the way it happened and we’ve got to take positives from Walsall, from Southampton, from the Crawley replay and hope that that helps us.
“We’ve got a lot of games, games coming up and we’re going to have to summon on a lot of our physical attributes and mentally we’re going to have to be strong, if not stronger than what we have been.”
Simon Bassey, AFC Wimbledon Interim Manager:
“We have to keep them going, keep them believing. For large parts of the game [against Doncaster], the lads will speak back to me as well and say that they felt comfortable.
“That really echoed what I said at the time. I didn’t really see us getting beat until we switched off for the free-kick. We addressed the negatives, encouraged the positives, and we’ve done sessions that will hopefully make those positives a more common theme in our play.”
“We move forward in good spirits.”