Ardley looking to climb the table as Dons toast unlikely hero

AFC Wimbledon 1 Dagenham and Redbridge 0

Neil Ardley hopes that his AFC Wimbledon side can use Saturday’s battling performance to build a platform for the rest of the season after securing their first win in seven games.

In a tightly contested affair Barry Fuller’s first goal in eight years proved enough for the Dons to claim the three points at the expense of visitors Dagenham and Redbridge, meaning they rise to 14th in the table.

But the Dons manager insisted it was still a case of could do better.

“I’ve got confidence in these boys,” said Ardley. “We could play better but if we can get some momentum then we’ll be hard to score against.

“We started well and looked like we were pressing on. But it was strange because there were points when we weren’t brave enough and we were playing backwards.

“The second half became a bit of scrap, with 25 minutes to go they brought on two really good strikers in Jamie Cureton and Rhys Murphy and that made it tense.”

Wimbledon had the best early chance when Dannie Bulman saw his deflected volley go inches wide.

However, the home side did take the lead when Fuller fired in following a knock down from George Francomb’s corner.

In a scrappy game Wimbledon struggled to take control and Dagenham squandered several opportunities to level the match.

Veteran striker Cureton and Ashley Chambers both could have done better with second half chances.

Bulman could have eased the tension but sliced wide when well placed but Wimbledon held on to leave the Daggers winless in six and just three points outside the relegation places.

“We have just got to sort the away form,” added Ardley.

“If you take away the first part of the season, where we lost a couple, our home forms been excellent.”

Wimbledon will hope to record back-to-back wins when they host York in their FA Cup first round replay on Tuesday evening.

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