FA Cup Rout As Rampant Dons Ease Past Bury

Wimbledon 5 v Bury 0

Wimbledon eased into the FA Cup second round with a comprehensive 5-0 replay drubbing of hapless Bury at Kingsmeadow on Tuesday (November 15).

Apart from a brief spell at the start of either half, the Dons were largely untroubled and, with Jake Reeves and Dean Parrett outstanding in midfield, rarely had to extend themselves against an inept Bury side that constantly misplaced passes and fluffed their rare goalscoring opportunities.

Indeed, if anything there was a sense of disappointment that the winning margin wasn’t more significant given the extent of the home side’s dominance.

The Dons will now travel to non-league side Curzon Ashton in the second round, a match being played at midday on Sunday 4 December and shown live on BT Sports.

This match started with the visitors on the front foot as they enjoyed early possession in Wimbledon’s half, although the Dons comfortably held firm.

The Dons’ first real chance fell to Lyle Taylor in the 11th minute but his header was off target, and shortly afterwards James Shea in the Wimbledon goal had to be alert after Neil Danns found himself in space.

But Wimbledon were starting to exert more constant pressure, with Andy Barcham shooting narrowly over before being withdrawn through injury, replaced by Dom Poleon.

Poleon was soon in the action, tumbling in the area amidst unsuccessful appeals for a penalty, but just moments later the Dons were ahead.

Defender Paul Robinson had pushed forward for a free-kick but Barry Fuller instead played it wide to Taylor. Taylor shrugged off the attentions of Greg Leigh to deliver a low near-post cross that Robinson capitalised on, deflecting it home into the far netting.

Five minutes later it was 2-0 as Bury struggled to clear a high ball that Poleon challenged for and it fell to Parrett, who found himself one-on-one with keeper Ben Williams and made no mistake with a clinical finish.

Bury’s disarray was symbolised by the early withdrawal of Leigh and the half-time replacement of Leon Barnett, but by then the Dons were three ahead.

Parrett and Taylor had both spurned additional chances, but the third came on the stroke of the break when Robinson again fancied himself as a forward. Whelpdale released Robinson’s forward run and the defender showed great awareness to backheel the ball to the unmarked Poleon who converted just inside the box.

There was still time in the first period for James Vaughan to demonstrate Bury’s profligacy by blazing over when the goal was at his mercy, but the visitors came out at the start of the second period with renewed vigour, earning two yellow cards for some robust challenges and forcing Shea to tip wide a Hallam Hope shot.

But the overall pattern of play was still in Wimbledon’s favour, Williams again called into action to palm a Parrett drive over the crossbar. Such was Wimbledon’s dominance that young left-back Seth Owens was brought on for a comfortable first-team debut as the Dons continued to worry more about attack than defence.

Surprisingly, it wasn’t until the 72nd minute that the Dons got their fourth. Poleon latched on to a flick from a throw, shrugged his way clear of the attentions of Tom Soares, rounded an ineffectual flop by Williams and then bundled the ball into the empty net after almost taking it too far wide.

The Dons continued to press, with Taylor in particular looking keen to get his name on the scoresheet. He had a shot blocked following a Parrett free-kick, while Poleon forced another save from Williams.

Taylor finally got his reward with ten minutes remaining with a fine individual goal. He was wide on the right and midway in the Bury half when he received Reeves’ pass. He scampered clear of Niall Mahor’s reckless lunge from behind to charge into the box, dipped a shoulder to wrong-foot Antony Kay and then fired home at the near post.

Wimbledon could have extended their lead still further, with Parrett shooting narrowly wide, but the match ended on a concerning note as Bury’s Tom Walker collided with the advertising hoardings after going shoulder-to-shoulder with Owens. Post-match reports indicated that, after receiving pitch-side treatment beyond the final whistle, the Bury man was later back on his feet, albeit groggy.

These two sides meet again at Kingsmeadow in the league on Saturday (19 November) when no doubt Bury will be keen to exact revenge, particularly having parted company with manager David Flitcroft in the aftermath of this FA Cup tie.

The Dons then travel to Millwall (Tuesday 22 November) before hosting Fleetwood Town the following Saturday.

Wimbledon: Shea, Fuller (Owens 67), Robertson, Robinson, Francomb, Parrett, Reeves, Bulman (Beere 75), Whelpdale, Barcham (Poleon 24), Taylor. Subs not used: Nightingale, Barnett, McDonnell, Egan.

Goalscorers: Robinson 27, Parrett 32, Poleon 4+2, 72, Taylor 80.

Booked: Robertson 34, Poleon 63.

Bury: Williams, Danns, Barnett (Maher 45), Kay, Leigh (Miller 37), Mayor, Soares, Mellis, Tutte, Vaughan, Hope (Walker 75). Subs not used: Dudley, Burgess, Rachubka, Bedeau.

Booked: Barnett 26, Tutte 50, Vaughan 52.

Att: 2,316.

By Rob Crane

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November 16, 2016