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09 March 2024 Venue Meadow Lane Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Reports

Report: Notts 0-2 Wimbledon

Second-half goals consign us to defeat

9 March 2024

A Connell Rawlinson own goal and a Kofi Balmer header consigned us to defeat at home to AFC Wimbledon.

Stuart Maynard made several changes to his starting line-up, with experienced heads Sam Slocombe, Adam Chicksen and Jim O’Brien all recalled to the XI.

Slocombe was protected by a back three of Kyle Cameron, Aden Baldwin and Lewis Macari, who were flanked by wing backs Chicksen and Aaron Nemane.

O’Brien was partnered by compatriot Scott Robertson at the base of midfield, with Jodi Jones and Dan Crowley supporting front man Macaulay Langstaff.

There was a decent early chance for the visitors’ Omar Bugiel who, with less than a minute on the clock, skied a left-footed effort inside the area after being picked out with a low cross.

We caused panic at the other end shortly afterwards as Nemane then Jones saw low crosses diverted to safety in quick succession, but Wimbledon managed to quell the danger.

The game settled down after that, with us taking control and Wimbledon seeing two players booked – John Joe O’Toole for preventing Nemane from taking a quick throw, then James Tilley for a shove on O’Brien as he looked set to shoot from 25 yards. Jones curled the resultant free-kick just wide.

O’Brien wrote his own name into the book on 24 minutes after a foul on Josh Neufville. The resultant free-kick was half-cleared before the ball was returned low into our area, with O’Toole sending his shot straight at Slocombe.

As half-time approached, a quickly-taken free-kick caught us cold but Josh Kelly’s weak left-footed shot was comfortably held by Slocombe.

We responded with neat combination play between O’Brien and Nemane, which resulted in the latter squaring the ball for Langstaff in the area. The ball was bobbly, though, and the forward couldn’t keep his sweeping shot down.

That proved to be the final chance of the first half - and the second period began cagily, with the crowd having to wait until the 55th minute for the first notable action as Jones’ powerful 30-yard effort flew high and wide of the target.

Nemane’s dinked cross drifted over Langstaff and Jones saw a deflected shot fly over the angle of post and crossbar as we continued to enjoy the better of the play.

And, shortly after Baldwin (injured) and O’Brien had made way for Rawlinson and Sam Austin, the biggest chance of the game presented itself when Macari brilliantly played Nemane to the byline. The wing back played the ball low into the six-yard box and it looked like Langstaff was destined to guide it home on the slide but, under pressure from a defender, the ball went wide.

That proved to be a decisive moment as, shortly after Jones had seen a right-footed snapshot saved, the visitors took the lead as a long throw from the left ended up in the net after glancing off Rawlinson’s head.

And our frustrations were compounded five minutes later as a back-post corner was sent looping over Slocombe and into the net by Balmer.

Will Randall, on for Chicksen, was denied a tap into an empty net by a heroic clearance as we sought a way back into the game.

But the damage was done as we suffered another defeat.

STARTING XI: Slocombe; Cameron, Baldwin (Rawlinson 65'), Macari; Chicksen (Randall 87'), Nemane; Robertson, O'Brien (Austin 71'), Jones, Crowley; Langstaff

UNUSED SUBS: Ashby-Hammond, Adebayo, Colkett, Jatta

BOOKINGS: O'Brien 24, Cameron 60'

ATTENDANCE: 10,224 (1,140)

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