BY DANIEL MARSH
AFC Wimbledon manager Wally Downes was satisfied with the run-out his side acquired in their first “proper” game of pre-season against Brentford.
The Dons took on the west London outfit on Friday night, following on from a game against Wexford in Ireland last week which saw a different 11 in each half.
Second-half goals from Marcus Forss, Christian Norgaard and Ollie Watkins were enough to give Brentford the win on the night.
Results in pre-season are hardly the focus and Downes was happy to see his men step-up their preparations for the new campaign and ultimately emerge unscathed.
“For the first proper game back, everyone came off not injured and had a very good run out,” said the Dons manager.
“We achieved all the times that we wanted to for the players at various stages of fitness. We’re happy to come away from the game with a good run out.”
After an even first-half where the hosts more than held their own and had the better chances, the Dons made 11 changes on the hour mark, with Downes blooding some of the club’s promising youngsters.
The visitors also made 11 changes – but at half-time – and included some established stars such as Rico Henry and Ollie Watkins, the latter in particular proving a real menace in the second half.
The game ran away from the Dons in the final 10 minutes, with two goals in three minutes from Norgaard and Watkins put the game to bed.
“Yeah, perhaps,” said Downes when asked if the final scoreline was a touch harsh based on the game overall.
“We had a couple of youngsters come on and the ones that they brought on were a little bit stronger than our young boys. But I was very pleased with our youngsters for the 30 minutes they were on – very good.”