Cherry Red Records Stadium - AFC Wimbledon
Saturday, December 10th 2011,
V Accrington Stanley, League Two 3pm
By Paul Willott
Along with a work colleague based near me in the South East, we travelled as fans of football to see this match. The history of both clubs is such a rich tapestry of great and golden memories, momentous falls, and gritty determination to work ones way back to the big-time, that made it stand out as tempting fixture and when free for an afternoon only, precluding trips further afield.
Much as I have always made a point of trying to see the Stanley when they are in the South at least once a season, this was equally about visiting the home of the Wombles who refused to be "dragged" to Milton Keynes.
I picked up my colleague in Croydon , then drove directly to Kingsmeadow. The best tip I can give any-one coming up from the South is to head up the A3, make sure you don't miss the left hand turn-off to the A2043, follow that road but keep your eyes peeled to your left or else you may miss the ground! Also, well worth making extra effort to get there early to bag what few parking options there are.
I don't think you will find a friendlier more welcoming bunch of stewards anywhere, quite happy to chat and a pleasant change from the frostiness experienced at many grounds. The stadium itself is modest and compact by League standards, and I can well see why some of the Womble fans that I work with are now bemoaning that the club has once again "outgrown" its home, as it did with Plough Lane.
That said, on the pitch one sensed a nervousness around the ground regarding the teams recent form, and this proved to be the case, as the Stanley eased to a 2-0 win, their first away win of the season.
Meanwhile, I could criticise the complete lack of pies (apparently not delivered), the lukewarm burger (I have had worse ), but little else. I sense Kingsmeadow is a stepping stone for the club in returning closer to its spiritual home in the near future.
Having parked in an opportune spot, the getaway was fairly easy , which was just as well given that I had to get changed before collecting the family for an evening out!
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