Rotherham 1 v Wimbledon 0
The Dons suffered their ninth game without a win on Saturday (17 December) as they lost 1-0 at Rotherham United, but it was a much-improved display from the Dons who were unlucky not to take at least a point.
Boss Terry Brown switched to a 4-4-1-1 formation, handed a long-awaited debut to Mat Mitchel-King and recalled Lee Minshull in place of the suspended Sammy Moore. He was rewarded with a much more solid display than in previous weeks.
It was only Sam Wood's 78th minute strike that beat the Dons and, although confidence visibly sapped after that, the travelling fans left in the knowledge that they had had enough chances to possibly win this encounter.
Dons keeper Seb Brown was again in impressive form, saving twice in quick succession from Rotherham skipper Danny Harrison. First the youngster dived to his right to turn Harrison's drive from outside the area round the post. And then he spectacularly turned Harrison's header over the bar.
But the Dons could themselves have had a half-time lead as the overlapping Sam Hatton was played in by Ryan Jackson, but his far-post cross was headed narrowly wide by Minshull.
Minshull again went close early in the second half, seeing his six-yard header cleared off the line, before Luke Moore's cushioned header drifted agonisingly wide of the far post with Conrad Logan beaten.
Jack Midson was next on the 'nearly' list when his header from a Jackson cross went narrowly over.
Just moments later the Dons were made to pay for their profligacy. Lewis Grabban turned inside Mitchel-King and rolled the ball square for Wood, whose effort bobbled into the far post with Brown stranded.
Brendan Kiernan and James Mulley were introduced in an attempt to salvage a deserved point, but it proved to be a false hope for the Dons.
They now face a busy festive period with home games against Oxford United (Boxing Day, 12.15 kick-off, live on Sky) and Southend (31 December) before travelling to Swindon on 2 January. This performance will give them renewed hope of taking something from those games.
Rotherham: Logan, Tonge, Raynes, Mullins, Harley, Wood, Harrison, Schofield, Grabban, Revell, Williams (Marshall 46). Subs not used: Warrington, Brown, Holroyd, Taylor.
Goalscorer: Wood 78.
Wimbledon: Brown, Hatton, Gwillim, Stuart, Mitchel-King (Franks 83), Minshull, Wellard, Yussuff (Mulley 83), Midson, L. Moore, Jackson (Kiernan 79). Subs not used: Bush, Turner.
By Rob Crane
What do you think of Wimbledon's recent slump? Why not comment on our forum?
www.wimbledonsw19.com are the proud sponsors of Marcus Gayle's away kit
December 19, 2011