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Match Reports

Notts County v AFC Wimbledon

23 January 2016

County Defeated At Home

Jamie Fullarton's first home game in charge of Notts County ended in defeat as AFC Wimbledon ran out 2-0 winners at Meadow Lane.

Tom Elliott got the first, firing in a superb first-time effort from 18 yards before Andy Barcham, who hit the bar twice, sealed the win late on as he found the bottom corner from 12 yards.

Fullarton made two changes from the team which won 1-0 at Crawley Town last weekend. Blair Adams, back from a successful loan spell with fellow League Two side Mansfield Town, came straight into the starting XI at the expense of Ronan Murray. Meanwhile, Izale McLeod had recovered from injury to take the place of last weekend's matchwinner, Filip Valencic, who dropped to the bench.

Notts started brightly and came close to opening the scoring when Wes Atkinson's cross found the returning Adams, but the 24 year-old saw his header hit the post before going wide of the goal.

Despite the positive opening, County fell behind as Wimbledon went up the other end and took the lead in spectacular style. Lyle Taylor did the groundwork, holding off a defender and laying the ball to strike-partner Elliott, who cracked a first-time effort into the top corner from the edge of the penalty area.

The Magpies looked to level immediately. Jon Stead forced Wimbledon goalkeeper James Shea into action with a 25-yard free-kick that the stopper had to tip over the bar.

The Dons continued to threaten. Taylor forced a fine save from Carroll at the near post after spinning away from Rob Milsom inside the area before the striker was denied a shot at goal by Elliott Hewitt's smart block.

McLeod headed over from Milsom's cross before Carroll saved Notts from going 2-0 down, palming away Elliott's fierce near-post effort after the goalscorer was played in by Taylor.

Trailing by a goal at half-time, Fullarton would have been looking for an improvement from his team in the second half.

Wimbledon, though, began the second period on the attack. Taylor flicked the ball over the head of Haydn Hollis but could not find enough room to get a shot away; Elliott tried his luck but Atkinson's last-ditch block diverted the ball away from goal.

Atkinson's ambitious 25-yard shot flew over the bar whilst, at the other end, Taylor volleyed wide from Elliott's low cross.

Scot Bennett headed over from an Adams free-kick and Adam Campbell clipped the ball over the top for McLeod to control but the striker slipped as he struck his effort and was unable to get it on target.

Liam Noble, back from a four-game suspension, came on for Bennett with just under 20 minutes remaining as Notts searched for a bit of magic to get themselves level.

However, they almost fell further behind as Barcham cracked an effort off the bar from a narrow angle.

David Fitzpatrick was slipped in on the right and was set to strike but Milsom was across to cover and block the shot with a superb sliding challenge.

The visitors doubled their lead inside the last 10 minutes as Barcham ran onto a loose ball and put a low effort past Carroll into the bottom corner from 12 yards out.

Substitiute Ade Azeez then saw a shot saved by the goalkeeper and Barcham hit the bar for a second time in the game from close range but it mattered little as the game was already won for Neal Ardley's side.

Notts: Carroll; Atkinson, Hewitt, Hollis, Milsom; Campbell, Thompson, Bennett (Noble, 72), Adams; Stead, McLeod (Murray, 76).
Subs not used: Loach, Audel, Smith, Valencic, Spencer.

Attendance: 5,301 (683 away)

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