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Coventry City Reserves 0
Wimbledon Reserves 3

Coventry City defender Marcus Hall has thrown himself into first team contention after completing a full 90 minutes for the reserve side.

With David Burrows still suspended after his sending off at Leicester, Hall could step straight back into the side for next Saturday’s clash with Leeds United at Highfield Road.

However, Hall’s presence in last night’s match was the only plus point as a Coventry side depleted by injury and international call-ups were taught a harsh lesson by a seasoned Wimbledon second string at Highfield Road.

City, who were without Laurent Delorge, Runar Normann, Mo Konjic, Gavin Strachan, Barry Quinn and Raffaele Nuzzo, were hardly in the game as the Dons used their experience to dominate proceedings.

Fielding several first team squad members including Brian McAllister, Gareth Ainsworth, Neil Ardley and Jon Goodman, Wimbledon had sealed the points long before the break.

The first goal came on 22 minutes after a neat exchange of passes between Goodman and Ardley in the box left Goodman free eight yards out, and his neat chip gave City keeper Chris Kirkland no chance.

Goodman had been the focus of attention earlier when, just eight minutes into the match, he earned himself a yellow card when he fell theatrically in the box under a challenge from Barry Ferguson.

The Sky Blues only hope of a response seemed to be first team midfielder Paul Telfer, who had requested to play in order to keep match fit, but the Scotsman could do nothing to turn the tide.

Wimbledon doubled their lead on the half-hour mark, when a pinpoint Ainsworth cross from the right was finished with a delightful curling header by Goodman.

It was not until two minutes before the break that City managed to muster their first shot on goal, which was a wayward 30-yard drive from John Eustace, and Coventry’s only shot on target took an hour – a fierce Telfer free kick which was well stopped by Kelvin Davis.

Wimbledon completed the damage with 20 minutes remaining when a quickly taken free-kick found Ardley unmarked and his long-range drive beat Kirkland and killed off any hope of a Coventry comeback.

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Kirkland, Mooney (Ford, 45mins), M Hall, Brightwell, Ferguson, Eustace, P Hall (Pead, 70mins), Telfer, S McPhee, McSheffrey, Shilton (G McPhee, 70mins)

Davis, Jupp, Hawkins, Hodges, McAllister, Francis (Tapp, 64mins), Ainsworth, Ardley, Goodman (Grady, 76mins), Hinds, Owusy (Agyemang, 32mins)

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Staying Up by Rick Gekoski

CWN / Sport / Football / Coventry City FC / 31 Aug 99

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM