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Ex-boss Dave Anderson understands AFC Wimbledon 'hurt'

AFC Wimbledon

Former AFC Wimbledon boss Dave Anderson says he understands the club's hurt at being drawn to potentially face MK Dons in the FA Cup second round.

The two clubs will meet for the first time if they win their replays against Ebbsfleet and Stevenage respectively.

In a statement, Wimbledon said the fixture was "very painful for us".

Anderson told the BBC's Non League Show: "When I got the job I knew about the history and I understand the hurt a lot of people have about the fixture."

AFC Wimbledon were formed in 2002 after the relocation of 'London' club Wimbledon FC to Milton Keynes was approved by a three-man Football Association commission.

Wimbledon FC subsequently moved to Milton Keynes in September 2003, and were renamed as MK Dons in the summer of 2004.

Anderson took charge in 2004 and led the club to the Isthmian League First Division title in his first season in charge, before losing in the Premier Division play-offs in the following two seasons.

He was then replaced by Terry Brown, who has guided the club up through the non-league pyramid to their current position of second in the Blue Square Bet Premier, and to the brink of their first meeting with Milton Keynes.


AFC Wimbledon fans who contacted the Non League Show said they felt "sick" at the thought of the draw.

And a statement on the club's website said: "Most people know the way that Milton Keynes obtained their football club.

"It was wrong then and it is still wrong now, which makes this fixture very painful for us.

"However, when we entered the FA Cup we understood that this might happen and we will go about our business professionally and complete the fixture.

"But we would have preferred that it hadn't happened. We have no further comment to make at the moment."

Anderson understands their feelings but believes Brown and his players will be relishing the prospect of the tie.

"As a football manager and within the dressing room it is a game we would have wanted because it is a massive fixture," he said.

In my book what happened was the footballing crime of the century

Dave Anderson

"It brings big publicity and that's from a selfish point of view as a manager and players who aren't as emotionally connected to the club as the directors and supporters of AFC Wimbledon are.

"I've had a text from someone at the club who says there is a big section of the support who want the game.

"The people who want the fixture may want to keep themselves in the background because they want to portray themselves as being united, but is it only natural that some people will want the fixture."

Anderson says both Wimbledon and Milton Keynes have plenty of work to do to book their place in the second round, but believes a tie between the sides could prove beneficial to the sport as a whole.

"It is another chance to restate what happened to the people of Wimbledon and get it back in the headlines," he added.

"In my book, what happened was the footballing crime of the century. It is a great chance to get that back in the news and make sure it is not allowed to happen again.

"No-one has a problem with Milton Keynes having a football team but why didn't they start like everyone else at the bottom and work their way up?"

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see also
FA Cup second round draw details
18 Nov 10 |  FA Cup
AFC Wimbledon 0-0 Ebbsfleet
06 Nov 10 |  FA Cup
Stevenage 0-0 MK Dons
06 Nov 10 |  FA Cup
Cup magic back in Wimbledon
07 Nov 08 |  FA Cup
Merton given back Dons trophies
02 Aug 07 |  Milton Keynes
AFC Wimbledon chase unique double
11 Jan 07 |  Non League
Wimbledon to change name
21 Jun 04 |  Milton Keynes
Milton Keynes boost for Dons
25 Jul 03 |  Milton Keynes
Sorrow at 'death of Dons'
28 May 02 |  Wimbledon
Dons get Milton Keynes green light
28 May 02 |  Wimbledon

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