DATE Sunday 7th January 2018
VENUE Wembley
AFC Wimbledon SQUAD 1.  George LONG
2.  Barry FULLER
3.  Jonathan MEADES
7.  George FRANCOMB
8.  Nadjim ABDOU
9.  Kwesi APPIAH
10.  Cody McDONALD
11.  Harry FORRESTER
14.  Liam TROTTER
17.  Andy BARCHAM
18.  Dean PARRETT
19.  Tom SOARES
20.  Toby SIBBICK
21.  Egil KAJA
23.  Callum KENNEDY
24.  Joe McDONNELL
25.  Nik TZANEV
26.  Anthony HARTIGAN
27.  Neset BELIKILI
28.  Alfie EGAN
29.  Jayden ANTWI
31.  Seth OWENS
32.  Darius CHARLES
33.  Lyle TAYLOR 
35.  Great EVANS
36.  Ossama ASHLEY
37.  Osaze URHOGHIDE
-.  Richard PINGLING
PREVIEW When Spurs were drawn out against AFC Wimbledon, there was the biggest gap between two sides in the Third Round and there would be a first meeting between the two sides.  The club who had dragged themselves up from park football to League One will enjoy their day at Wembley and while the club have not had the giant-killing reputation of their former incarnation, that should not make Tottenham take them any more lightly.

As well as the team wanting to make a good impression against a Premier League team, there are three players in the AFC side who will want to make an impact.  Andy Barcham was a young striker who had to battle his way through a number of big money signings to make his only appearance in the League Cup, while great things were expected from Dean Parrett when Tottenham beat a host of clubs to sign him form QPR, but it never quite worked for him at White Hart Lane and although he made his debut at a young age, he has moved on to get first team football.  That was first at Stevenage and then on to AFC Wimbledon.  The third former Spurs is George Francomb, who never made the first team, who was at the club from age 9 to 14 and then went to Norwich City, where he did make three first team appearances, but left to join Wimbledon, after a successful loan spell there.

The side is not crammed with household names, but there is experience in Paul Robinson, Liam Trotter and Nadjim Abdou, all of whom played a lot of games for Millwall, with the latter currently on loan from the Lions.  Harry Forrester is on loan from Glasgow Rangers after playing a lot of matches for Brentford and Doncaster Rovers, Kwesi Appiah was on Crystal Palace's books, Darius Charles was at Stevenage with Parrett and Tom Soares, who played midfield for Palace and Stoke City.  Captain Barry Fuller played over 100 games in defence for Gillingham, .

Their star player at the moment is Lyle Taylor, who is a Montserrat international and the club's leading scorer, who is in good form at the moment, so his physical presence will need to be dealt with by Juan Foyth and whoever else plays in the middle of our defence.  The team do not score a lot of goals and this season they find themselves in the relegation places in League One with 22 goals in 25 league matches.  With erratic form, beating Bradford City one week before drawing with Gillingham two weeks later.

This is an opportunity to play without the pressure of points on offer and the players could make a name for themselves.  Spurs have to look back at the Wycombe Wanderers game last season ,when we came very close to getting knocked out to know that they have to be on their guard.  I wouldn't have thought Wimbledon will follow West Ham's lead, as they have nothing to lose and will be cautious, but will be willing to have a go at Spurs.  Even with the expected mass changes in the Tottenham team, they should be able to move the ball around to get a win and move forward to the next round.

PREDICTION Tottenham Hotspur    4         AFC Wimbledon    0
Spurs will rest a number of regular first team players and give starts to some of the fringe squad members and those who have not had much chance of playing a lot recently.
Barry Fuller could play after suffering an ankle injury, Jon Meades has recovered from a hamstring strain and Cody McDonald returns after a spell out with a foot injury.

Match of the Day 2  (BBC 1) - Sunday 22.25 (highlights)  Also available online.

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BBC London -  Live commentaries listed down the page.
TalkSport (DAB or 2nd89 MW)

Tottenham Hotspur  3 (0)                                                                       
FA Cup Third Round
Sunday 7th January 2018
AFC Wimbledon  0 (0)

Kick off 15:00
Kane  62m 18s
Kane  64m 11s
Vertonghen  70m 05s
Wanyama (foul on Charles)  49 




Crowd :   47,527 Weather :  Dry, chilly
Referee :  David Coote (Nottingham) Assistant Referees :  Mr. A. Nunn; Mr. D. Leach
Fourth Official :  Andre Marriner  
AFC Wimbledon kicked off and played towards the West Stand end in the first half.
Game time : -  90 + 2 minutes.
Tottenham Hotspur : kit AFC Wimbledon : kit
13  Michel VORM

  2  Kieran TRIPPIER
21  Juan FOYTH

11  Erik LAMELA
12  Victor WANYAMA     
19  Mousa DEMBELE 
17  Moussa SISSOKO  (20  DELE Alli  65)

18  Fernando LLORENTE  (  7  Heung-Min SON  59)
10  Harry KANE
  (c)      (14  Georges-Kevin N'KOUDOU  79)

Unused subs: 
33  Ben DAVIES
15  Eric DIER
Christian ERIKSEN

    1  George LONG

  2  Barry FULLER (c)
  Darius CHARLES
  3  Jonathan MEADES

  7  George FRANCOMB
14  Liam TROTTER
19  Tom SOARES  (26  Anthony HARTIGAN  79)
  8  Nadjim ABDOU  (10  Cody McDONALD  70)
17  Andy BARCHAM  (11
  Harry FORRESTER  69)

33  Lyle TAYLOR

Unused subs: 
21  Egil KAJA

Manager :  Mauricio Pochettino Manager :  Neil Ardley
Sponsor :   AIA Shirt sponsor :  Football Manager
Kit Supplier :  Nike Kit Supplier :   Admiral
Match report

An FA Cup tie played in cold conditions, with the opposition happy to sit in, while their fans cheered their every pass, was not one to get the pulses racing, but just when it looked as though Wimbledon would be able to hold out, tactical changes by Mauricio Pochettino paved the way for two Harry Kane goals and a pile-driver the Spurs fans have been waiting four years for from Jan Vertonghen saw Spurs safely through to the Fourth Round.

With Tottenham changing both personnel and formation to a 4-4-2 to accommodate both Harry Kane and Fernando Llorente up front, Wimbledon welcomed players back from injury to bolster their defence and from the kick off, that was what they were concentrating on.  Ten men quickly back behind the ball and cheers from their support every time they hoofed the ball into the Spurs half.  Llorente had an early opportunity, which he poked wide from Lamela's cross, Wanyama wellied one over and when Erik crossed, Kane was unable to get on the end of it with very close attention from two defenders.  In the 18th minute, we came close with a fine move.  Sissoko played a pacy cross in to Llorente's chest and Fernando laid it off for Lamela to fire in a volley that the keeper knew little about, as the ball flew off his gloves.

The away fans were cheering every pass they made and when they won a corner, the roar made you wonder what would happen if they actually scored.  Well, that nearly happened on 29 minutes, when Taylor held the ball up in the box and laid it back to Abdou to shoot at goal and only a fingertip from Michel Vorm took the ball against the bar rather than in the back of the net.  The ball came down and hit the keeper on the head before going out to his left, where Liam Trippier hit it back at goal, but straight into Vorm's middle.  It was a good break and well set up, but Vorm showed he was up to the task of filling in for Hugo with a very good save.

Kane's shooting had been below par and he fired one high over from the edge of the box and then pulled one wide across goal, but he was on target with a fierce shot after a one-two with Llorente, but Long dived to his right to push the ball away.  Moussa Sissoko took the ball inside his own half and ran thirty yards, committing two Wimbledon players as he went, before finding Kane, who then pushed the ball to his right, where Lamela was through on the keeper, but his attempt with a little dig to lift the ball over the diving goalie was thwarted by an arm thrown up to block it for a corner.   

Walker-Peters blocked a Charles shot, but the whistle brought a half to a close, which had seem Spurs dominate the stats, but Wimbledon have the best chance,  so, the half-time break came and featured an interview with Gary Mabbutt, which wasn't the most sensitive choice of guest, seeing as how John Fashanu re-arranged his face when Spurs met Wimbledon at White Hart Lane.

At the start of the second half, Spurs upped the pace they played at and Kane's ball out to Trippier saw him deliver a volleyed cross low across the box, but it was kicked clear, with Wanyama picking up a cheap yellow card for a pull on Charles, with his first foul of the day.  The free-kick was played in and Meades got a head to it and Vorm had to be sure that the looping header wasn't going to drop in, so pushed it over the bar.  At the other end, Long wasn't looking quite so sound, as Lamela's long ball was fumbled under no pressure for a corner.  Erik took the corner and it was delivered low to the near post, but it went through everyone.  With five minutes of the second half gone, Mousa Dembele finally unloaded a shot from outside the box and it bounced back off the foot of the keeper's right hand post, with him beaten.  When Tottenham gave away a corner, it did lead to a breakaway, which hadn't been possible until then, as Wimbledon were rarely attacking for one to break down. 

Taylor did get past Foyth on our left and his ball into the middle was well dealt with by Jan, who was always in the right place today.  A couple of corners saw Harry have a shot blocked for the first one and then from the second, he untypically blazed way over the bar again.  But, Llorente was replaced by Son, as the two up front tactic was just not working and his involvement soon made it clear that this would pose different problems for the visiting defence.  He forced a throw when he ran at Fuller, then as Lamela's long cross came in from the right, he looked to get in at the far post, but couldn't reach it.  However, the goalkeeper made sure he took Son out after the ball had long gone and again, weak refereeing allowed him to go unpunished.  It was so late and so deliberate, that it at least deserved a yellow and that should have been added to with another for the large amounts of time he wasted over every dead ball kick. 

It ultimately didn't matter, as Kane gave Spurs the lead in the 63rd minute.  Trippier played the ball to Sissoko forward of him and the low ball into the six yard box wasn't cut out, allowing Harry to slide in between two defenders to poke the ball into the roof of the net.  It was a poachers goal and one that took him to 125 for Spurs.  Inside two minutes, he had doubled the tally and gone ahead of Teddy Sheringham in the Spurs all time goal-scoring charts.  Kyle Walker-Peters made good ground on the left wing and came inside to bend a shot into the heart of the box from inside the area, left of central.  It was Harry Kane on the spot to slide the ball past Long with a bobbling shot from his position just outside the six yard box.  He really is on form, despite his wayward shooting in the first half.

Dele came on for Moussa Sissoko, after he had just been involved in two goals, with the England midfielder receiving a chorus of boos for being a former MK Dons player.  I don't know what the Womblers thought it would achieve, but it brought out the best in Alli, getting into a far post position to nod Trippier's cross just wide and then chasing back to defend and when the ball went in front of the away section, he slowly strode over to get it and knock it back to Vorm.  It also brought out the devil in him, as he set out to nutmeg Wimbledon players and in doing so, set up Son to go to the dead ball line and pull it across goal, without a Spurs forward there to put it away.

With Harry Kane and Jan pouncing on Lyle Taylor as he ponced about with the ball 25 yards from his own goal, Jan took the ball forward a pace and larruped it past the keeper, with a deflection off of Barry Fuller's arse from 25 yards out.  It was almost like the Belgian had forgotten how to celebrate a goal, but he did a mini-SuperJan shirt rip as he was mobbed by team-mates.  It has been a long time coming and his frustration was starting to show, but maybe this will open the floodgates for him.

There was still time for Spurs to go forward at will, as the visitors suffered after chasing the ball for over 70 minutes.  Kane struck a shot from the left to sting Long's palm, Lamela struck one straight at the keeper and when Wimbledon get out to win a soft free-kick on halfway, they played it to a player who was standing well offside.  So, back it came, with Sonny having a shot that got blocked, then the winger played in Dele, who took the ball on his chest before being knocked over by Meades in the box, but the ref gave nothing.

Francomb got a shot on target, but it was straight at Vorm and that was five minutes from time.  Kieran Trippier had been much more of a problem for Wimbledon in the second half and he produced a smart pass into the box for Son to run onto and his shot from a very tight angle on the right got a deflection off Oshilaja, taking over the keeper and hitting the inside of the far post, with the ball coming back into the keeper's arms.  Another challenge in the box, when Fuller nudged Nkoudou, running at him at speed, sending the winger to the floor was ignored by the ref, as it looked like the sympathy vote was being cast by him.

A long ball was chased by some fat bloke that Wimbledon brought on, but Vorm beat him to it and he then fell to the ground causing everyone's seats to shudder.  Hew was just one of the AFC players who spent the majority of the afternoon pushing Spurs players over and I think Taylor had done it to Jan so many times, that he just took his frustration at the referee doing nothing about it on the football as it ripped into the net for Tottenham's third.  Kane racked up the 125th and 126th goals of his career with the club, becoming the ninth highest scorer in THFC history.  Long may it continue.

Sissoko looked more on it today, running at opponents and being involved in the first two goals, while Juan Foyth was almost always assured and calm on the ball, with Kyle Walker-Peters putting in a good performance at left back.

The Wimbledon supporters stayed behind after the final whistle, no doubt hoping to make good use of the things that everyday folks leave behind.  It would be nice if their next home crowd had such a turn-out, but you know it will be back to the 4,000 mark, with away fans included in that figure, so there battle against relegation will be all they have to concentrate on now.

Ted Maul




AFC Wimbledon started as a football club when a group of eco-friendly litter pickers got together on Wimbledon Common and started playing the game, having been fed up of having to play tennis all the time at school in Games lessons.


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What you thought
Sparky Marky As I was walking up Olympic Way, I saw a Wimbledon fan and I asked how he got to Wembley. He replied, "Underground, Overground ..."
- -.


Other scores during this round :
Aston Villa 1 Peterborough United 3 Saturday
Birmingham City 1 Burton Albion 0 Saturday
Blackburn Rovers 0 Hull City 1 Saturday
Bolton Wanderers 1 Huddersfield Town 2 Saturday
Bournemouth 2 Wigan Athletic 2 Saturday
Brentford 0 Notts. County 1 Saturday
Cardiff City 0 Mansfield Town 0 Saturday
Carlisle United 0 Sheffield Wednesday 0 Saturday
Coventry City 2 Stoke City 1 Saturday
Doncaster Rovers 0 Rochdale 1 Saturday
Exeter City 0 West Bromwich Albion 2 Saturday
Fulham 0 Southampton 1 Saturday
Fleetwood Town 0 Leicester City 0 Saturday
Ipswich Town 0 Sheffield United 1 Saturday
Liverpool 2 Everton 1 Friday
Manchester City 4 Burnley 1 Saturday
Manchester United 2 Derby County 0 Friday
Middlesbrough 2 Sunderland 0 Saturday
Millwall 4 Burnley 1 Saturday
Newcastle United 3 Luton Town 1 Saturday
Norwich City 0 Chelsea 0 Saturday
QPR 0 MK Dons 1 Saturday
Stevenage 0 Reading 0 Saturday
Watford 3 Bristol City 0 Saturday
Wolverhampton Wanderers 0 Swansea City 0 Saturday
Wycombe Wanderers 1 Preston North End 5 Saturday
Yeovil Town 2 Bradford City 0 Saturday
Newport County 2 Leeds United 1 Sunday
Shrewsbury Town 0 West Ham United London 0 Sunday
Nottingham Forest 4 Arsenal 2 -day
Brighton & Hove Albion 1 Crystal Palace 1 -day


* Pub facts may not actually be true, but after a few pints everyone might think so.


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