After last weekend’s draws at Crawley and Macclesfield, even creative accountancy couldn’t mathematically relegate Wimbledon. The pressure of the drop was avoided and we could stop looking over our shoulders.
Torquay were due at the soon to be facelifted CRRS and they were chasing promotion. A tough afternoon was in prospect which looked more awkward when Jack Turner was denied a rare start due to a warm-up accident.
This enforced a bench shuffle and saw Rashid Yussuff recalled from a DIY shopping trip to take a place in the squad without a recognised keeper on the bench.
The thought of Sammy Moore in goal was not a good one.
Watery sunshine and a generous selection of WDON cakes greeted the opening 45 that saw Olejnik the busier of the keepers.
Not a torrent of chances but the Dons were ahead on points. Seb Brown saved strongly after a solitary lapse from the rejuvenated Stuart whilst, at the other end, Jolley and Midson were giving the Gulls’ back line some things to think about.
Stalemate at the interval but it was the Dons looking the more likely to score and Torquay not looking like what you’d expect a team at the top of the table to be.
After the break, the Dons grew in confidence and started to make life very uncomfortable for Torquay. Sustained Dons' pressure saw a team with four members of the League Two team of the season start to look a little panicked but hold on at 0-0.
All the time it was scoreless, you keep fearing the slap in the face of the goal against the run of play.
Never a nice sensation.
As the rain began to fall, we discussed the leak in the stand roof, just as Sam Hatton found acres of space on the right. We got back to talking about the football as his pass just evaded a Torquay leg and found Yussuff. He had time to compose himself and send a low shot into the corner, and the Tempest hordes into relieved celebration.
Not bad when he could have been queuing to pay for some compost and leaf wipes. Soon after that, a Dons counter saw Luke Moore tee up George Moncur to curl the killer blow into the far corner and nudge the Dons over the 50 point landmark.
This gave a chance for the busy Brendan Kiernan to come on to irritate Torquay further. Enough to see him charged into the hoardings by the tights-clad Rene Howe. Hopefully, we can see more of Kiernan soon, as his movement and direct running look promising.
Barnet are next up, at an Underhill ground enjoying a stay of execution. Full coverage as ever from the T and the C will be provided. They’re fighting to stay up, Barnet that is, and will the added dash of extra franchise spice from Martin Allen spur the Dons on?
It promises to be a rollercoaster ride, with young Reece Jones being added to the squad too. Just don’t mention Thorpe Park to him.
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