Grays Athletic v AFC Wimbledon – A Match Preview

GAFCA big chance for Wimbledon to bounce back tomorrow against a Grays side who are rebuilding for the second time since last season ended. Their decision to remove manager Craig Edwards after no games in charge before the season began means former caretaker Gary Phillips is now back in the hotseat…

This means since Edwards took charge, Grays have signed twenty six players (three of whom have re-signed from last years squad after initially being released), five of which have now been released including our very own Mickey Haswell (who has now rolled up at Welling United).

So far, so confusing. In fact its probably better if I don’t concentrate on Grays at all (their squad anyway…). And you thought Wimbledon had a few players to choose from…

The game tomorrow isn’t all ticket despite what is usually the away end at the Recreation ground only holding 500, and an expected minimum of 1000 Dons fans travelling for this Bank Holiday clash. I’m sure they’ll fit us all in, after all Grays average attendance for their first two games has failed to reach 600.

As for the game itself, well its hard to imagine anything other than a Dons win, but that’s partly down to the great start we have made. We could easily have an Eastbourne style banana skin on our hands if the players don’t apply themselves properly. Plus Terry has to be careful with his starting lineup… if he sticks with too many of those who began against Oxford we could see a stale performance, yet if he brings in too many new faces (as he has mentioned he may do) there will be no continuity. Still, we have a very fit squad, so I would imagine the only changes would be down to minor knocks picked up on Saturday.

My predicted lineup is as follows;

Pullen

Garrard

Hussey

Johnson

Lorraine

Gregory

Duncan

Wellard

Hatton

Kedwell

Main

So only three changes in the above, although I think we may see some new faces in the squad, Kennedy Adjei for example might find himself given some game time. Taylor picked up a knock on Saturday so despite being a fit lad there is a chance he wont start, and I would imagine this is just the sort of game Jon Main will need to break his scoring duck.

It could be Main’s last chance for some time, as with Ross Montague coming back to fitness after signing last week and in for a run out on Tuesday for the reserves the temptation for Brown to bring him in sooner rather than later will be there. So long as Main isn’t scoring of course, I think we would all hope he will give Terry Brown a headache in the coming weeks.

A win tomorrow should put is back into the playoff spots once again, yet we should still wait for ten games to pass before we can get a clear idea of where we sit amongst our rivals in this division. By that time we would have played six games away from home, so finding ourselves in the top five at that point will be a great springboard for the lads to push on for the rest of the season.

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