Wimbledon – the springboard again?

It was just over two years ago (23rd February 2019) that your CAST match previewer wrote a visionary piece entitled: "Wimbledon- Igor's moment" including the line "It is now three years since Igor scored a league goal for Charlton and it really wouldn't be a bad time to get another one now." And when Vetokele duly struck in injury time at Kingsmeadow for a 2-1 away win it kick started the famous run which took us from fifth place to Wembley. The task ahead of the team this season is a lot more challenging and will depend on other teams slipping up but who knows what might happen under new management? As Nigel Adkins said in his first interview: "the last ten games of the season - there's strange results all the way"

Despite the regrettable absence of supporters it was a highly emotional time for AFC Wimbledon when they returned to Plough Lane last November. It had been a fantastic achievement for the fan-owned club to raise the necessary funds to complete their new stadium and, when Joe Pigott scored against Doncaster after eight minutes, it looked as though it might (to quote a famous commentator) become the perfect start. The game ended 2-2 and it wasn't until 2nd December that the first win at Plough Lane was achieved - an impressive 2-1 over Peterborough with Pigott scoring the winner. That win saw them in a comfortable eleventh place but things have gone downhill since then and their home record has been a big part of the decline -  just two wins, two draws and seven defeats since the return.

When they parted company with Glyn Hodges on January 30th they were in twenty first place. They chose not to appoint Jason Euell and instead Hodges was replaced by former Academy coach Mark Robinson who had been at the club since 2004 when they were in the Isthmian League. Two months after his promotion they are twenty second place and beginning to run out of time. Scoring goals has been the main problem. They have managed only nine goals in fifteen games since the turn of the year and three of those were in one game (3-2 at Wigan). Pigott scored two of the goals at Wigan but hasn't scored since. However, it is worth noting that all of the six points the team have achieved since the Wigan game have been won by goals in the last ten minutes. They clearly don't give up.

It is good to see a league table showing Charlton in a play-off spot but, on points per game, we are down in tenth place behind Ipswich, Blackpool, Oxford and Portsmouth who are all involved in games against each other this weekend. The position will be a lot clearer by the end of the month as, with Charlton's game with Crewe postponed to 27th April because of international call-ups, most of our rivals' current games in hand will have been used up by the time we travel to Doncaster on Good Friday.

Three points are essential on Saturday and we wonder if it might be Jason Pearce who comes up with the winner to give Adkins a 100% start.

You can buy your stream of his first game here: