Downes hopes point against Accrington proves crucial in battle for survival
There were mixed feelings for Wally Downes after watching his AFC Wimbledon side held to a 1-1 draw at home to fellow strugglers Accrington.
Joe Pigott had given Wimbledon the lead midway through the first half, but that was cancelled out by Jordan Clark’s equaliser just after the half-hour.
Stanley could have taken all three points, but Billy Kee missed a penalty, with the point leaving Wimbledon in the bottom four, two points behind Stanley.
Downes said: ‘We had a poor five minutes where we lost our composure culminating in the penalty.
The penalty was giveable and he has given it – we were just lucky that they did not score from it.
‘In the second half we should have come out and played better but we didn’t, so we didn’t deserve to get anything more from the game.
‘We controlled the first half-hour and needed to not make errors and get punished for them.
We were comfortably in control but that whole scenario changed with their goal which was a gift to them.
‘We have to focus on the next game and not look too far ahead.
That is all you can do.
But if this is the point that keeps us up you have to respect the point.
‘They all count and we will see.
It is far from done, there are still 15 points to play for.
Perhaps come the last game at Bradford we will look back and this will have been a critical point for us.
‘ Accrington had lost three in a row coming into this one, and could have dropped further into the relegation mire with a defeat.
Kee’s miss from the spot, side-footed wide, was a chance missed, while assistant manager Jimmy Bell also felt Paul Smyth should have had an early penalty.
In the end though, it was a case of one point won, rather than two lost according to Bell.
He said: ‘We’ve got to be happy with a point.
It’s a difficult place to come, Wimbledon are doing well and we’re on a bit of a bad run.
‘It was nervy at both ends, the game was end-to-end in the last 20 and it could have gone either way.
It’s a game they thought that they had to win and they put a lot into it.
‘There were a few strange decisions for both teams – the referee was a bit card happy.
He was booking lads on both teams for going down in the box when on another day a referee would give them penalties.
‘We thought the one in the first couple of minutes on Paul Smyth was as clear a penalty as you’ll ever see – everybody in the ground thought it was a penalty.
‘If we play like we did here and deliver more battling performances full of team spirit and endeavour we’ll be OK.’