Joy for AFC Wimbledon as side triumph over MK Dons in rivals’ first trip to Kingsmeadow

Neal Ardley believes Jake Reeves deserves legendary status at AFC Wimbledon after his goal helped secure a 2-0 win over bitter rivals MK Dons.

Much was made of the Buckinghamshire club’s first trip to The Cherry Red Records Stadium and the hosts made their feelings known with no mention of the visitors in the programme or on the scoreboard.

Reeves put the Dons on their way to securing their first ever league win over the visitors on the hour mark, as he converted from close range after Andy Barcham had headed Lyle Taylor’s cross into his path.

Taylor then secured the win nine minutes later as he latched onto a quick throw from the right before arrowing an unstoppable drive beyond David Martin.

Ardley said: “I’m so delighted for Jake Reeves because for me he is one of the best players to pull the shirt on for the club.

“He doesn’t get the credit he deserves and for him to score a goal tonight on all nights should put him down in legendary status amongst the fans.

“At their place I think I pushed so hard for the win that we forgot to turn up and I blame myself as I wanted it so much.

“Today I took an opposite way around that was a lot more calm and tactical and it gave them the freedom to do what they did.”

The Dons are now six points ahead of Robbie Neilson’s side in the table with the win lifting them back into the top half.

Ardley admitted to pre-match nerves but he praised his team for making it a memorable night for the fans and for everyone working behind the scenes at the club.

“I was a little bit nervous because I wanted to do the club proud and I wanted the players to do the club proud.

“I thought first half it was a bit of cat and mouse with not too much in it between the teams.

“At half-time we came up with a little game plan and tweaked a couple of things and second half we were unbelievable.

“I’ve seen first-hand how hard our club and board have worked behind the scenes and they’re trying to protect all the good work we’ve done as a club to make sure it didn’t get ruined.

“Credit to them because they’ve worked so hard to make sure it went well.

“I hope it has, I hope it does continue too and I hope Wimbledon come out of it looking like a special club.”

Image courtesy of Graham c99, with thanks.

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