MX23RW : Monday, February 18 02:55:15
Aug 28, 2018 at 7.45pm UK at ​Cherry Red Records Fans' Stadium (Kingston upon Thames, Surrey)
Attendance: 3,962
AFC Wimbledon
West HamWest Ham United
Pigott (2')
McDonald (18')
FT(HT: 1-0)
Diop (63'), Ogbonna (83'), Hernandez (90')

Live Commentary: AFC Wimbledon 1-3 West Ham United - as it happened

Relive Sports Mole's live text coverage of West Ham United's 3-1 win against AFC Wimbledon, as the Hammers dodged a big upset at Kingsmeadow.
Live Commentary: AFC Wimbledon 1-3 West Ham United - as it happened
© Reuters

West Ham United recovered from an early setback to beat AFC Wimbledon 3-1 at Kingsmeadow in Tuesday night's EFL Cup second-round tie.

After opening the scoring through Joe Pigott less than two minutes in, the hosts lost Rod McDonald to two bookable offences.

The Hammers eventually capitalised on the man advantage through second-half goals from Issa Diop, Angelo Ogbonna and Javier Hernandez.

Relive how the 90 minutes of action unfolded with Sports Mole's live text coverage below.

6.45pmHello and welcome to Sports Mole's live text coverage of the EFL Cup second-round tie between AFC Wimbledon and West Ham United at Kingsmeadow. This local showdown - there is a little over an hour between the two grounds - has all the hallmarks for a giant killing as the League One hosts look to take advantage of the Premier League visitors' slow start to the campaign.

6.47pmThe Hammers have played three and lost three in the Premier League, leaving them rock bottom of the table as the only team yet to get off the mark. Manuel Pellegrini insists that now is not the time to start panicking, and there were certainly plenty of positives to take away from the 3-1 loss to Arsenal at the weekend, but a fourth defeat on the spin tonight and questions will start to be asked.


STARTING XI: Adrian; Zabaleta, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell; Rice, Obiang; Yarmolenko, Snodgrass, Lucas Perez; Hernandez

SUBS: Fabianski, Balbuena, Masuaku, Cullen, Holland, Felipe Anderson, Antonio

6.51pmStarting with a look at the visiting team, Pellegrini has made nine changes from the 3-1 loss to Arsenal, but this is still a pretty strong side. There are full debuts for Andriy Yarmolenko and Lucas Perez, who have had to settle for cameos from the bench in the Premier League since arriving in the summer, while Aaron Cresswell, Adrian and Pedro Obiang are used for the first time.

6.53pmAdrian takes over from Lukasz Fabianski in goal, with the Poland international providing cover from the bench, and Cresswell will feature on the opposite flank to Pablo Zabaleta. Ogbonna, meanwhile, will partner Issa Diop in the heart of defence, three days on from the club-record signing's disastrous own goal at the Emirates Stadium. Robert Snodgrass is the only other player to retain his place in the side.

6.55pmSnodgrass is fielded in a three-man attacking midfield, which also contains Yarmolenko and makeshift wideman Perez. Javier Hernandez, who has dropped down to the bench of late, will therefore lead the line for United at Kingsmeadow and will be hoping to get his campaign up and running. Elsewhere, Declan Rice - born down the road from this ground and very much considered a local lad - is alongside Obiang in the engine room.


STARTING XI: King; Sibbick, Garratt, Oshilaja, McDonald; Pinnock, Hartigan, Trotter, Wagstaff; Hanson, Pigott

SUBS: McDonnell, Purrington, Thomas, Nightingale, Appiah, Barcham, Wordsworth

6.59pmSwitching attention to the home side, Neal Ardley has made three changes on the back of the weekend defeat to Sunderland here, so this is a very strong XI. Joe Pigott once again leads the line for the Dons and has been mightily impressive in the early weeks of the season, scoring three goals in six outings, including the opener against the Black Cats a few days back.

7.01pmTennai Watson, who is on loan at Kingsmeadow from Reading, is still absent from Ardley's squad over fitness concerns, and Tom Soares also misses out once again. Kwesi Appiah has been struggling with a knock but is deemed fit enough for a place on the bench, meaning that we could well see him at some point. Elsewhere, Tom King keeps his place in goal and is looking for a fourth clean sheet of the season, but he has conceded five in his last two matches.

7.03pmWest Ham United manager Manuel Pellegrini has made nine changes to his starting lineup; Issa Diop and Robert Snodgrass the only two players to keep their place in the side from Saturday's 3-1 loss at Arsenal. There are less alterations in the side fielded by Neal Ardley, meanwhile, as just three men drop out from the 2-1 defeat to Sunderland here.

West Ham United's Declan Rice in action against Swansea City on March 3, 2018© Reuters

7.05pmWimbledon head into this game sitting 15th in the League One standings, having failed to win any of their last four matches since beating Fleetwood Town on the opening day. Joe Pigott go the first of his three early-season goals at Highbury, finding the net on the hour mark to get the Dons up and running while at the same time condemning Joey Barton to defeat on his managerial bow.

7.07pmSince that slender away win at Fleetwood, Wimbledon have been held to back-to-back goalless draws by Coventry City and Barnsley, before going down 3-1 to Walsall and then 2-1 at home to Sunderland last time out. That makes it four without a win in the league, so the mood is not exactly high around Kingsmeadow at this moment in time. As proved in their first three games, though, Ardley's men know how to keep the opposition out on their day.

7.09pmWimbledon have away games against Burton Albion and Gillingham to prepare for, either side of an EFL Trophy tie at Charlton Athletic, and Ardley will be looking to get at least three more points on the board from those. Tonight is all about the EFL Cup, of course, and as they so often say, form can be forgotten about in games such as this one. Make no mistake about - Dons fans are well up for this.

7.11pmAs Ardley said himself earlier this week, this match has to be considered a "free hit" of sorts. Wimbledon are not expected to win against Premier League opposition, and as long as they are not thrashed then there will be no great shame in losing to a side of United's calibre. In fact, you could say that they have already surpassed supporters' expectations as they are at this second-round stage for the first time ever.

7.13pmThat is thanks to a 2-1 win over Portsmouth in the first round, bringing an end to their seven-year hoodoo in this competition. Pigott was again on the scoresheet in that fixture at Fratton Park, as the Dons came from a goal down to pick up the victory in normal time. On that note, it is worth pointing out that extra time is no longer used at this stage - we will instead go straight to penalties if required.

7.15pmWimbledon began life in the ninth tier of English football 16 years ago, two weeks after West Ham United had finished seventh in the top flight with the likes of Joe Cole, Paulo Di Canio, Michael Carrick and Jermain Defoe in their ranks. A lot has changed for both sides since then, with West Ham hopping between the Championship and Premier League in recent times and Wimbledon climbing through the divisions into League One.

7.17pmDID YOU KNOW? AFC Wimbledon have lost both of their previous matches against Premier League opposition - the fact that they have only played two top-flight teams highlights just how recent their formation was - and they have lost both. There was a 2-1 defeat to Liverpool and a 3-0 loss at the hands of Tottenham Hotspur, both in the third round of the FA Cup.

7.19pmFollowing on from that previous fact, West Ham were knocked out of the EFL Cup the last time that they faced League One opposition, going down 5-4 on penalties to Sheffield United a couple of years back following a 1-1 draw after extra time. Pellegrini has experience of winning this competition with Manchester City, lifting the cup in 2014 and 2016. The Chilean also won all four matches against non-Prem sides during his time with the Citizens.

7.21pmManuel Pellegrini lifted the EFL Cup twice during his time at Manchester City and has a perfect record in this competition against sides from outside of the Premier League. The Chilean has not enjoyed the best of starts to life at West Ham United, though, and this fixture at nearby Kingsmeadow does have a banana skin feel to it.

Manuel Pellegrini gesticulates during the Premier League game between Liverpool and West Ham United on August 12, 2018© Reuters

7.23pmThree defeats in a row has left West Ham rock bottom of the Premier League standings, although they are now very much perennial slow starters having lost three-in-a-row three times already this decade. There was always a risk that the Hammers would take some time to gel together, and as Lukasz Fabianski - one of their 10 new recruits - said last week, supporters need to remain patient.

7.25pmTo put the Hammers' £100m spending spree into some perspective, tonight's opponents Wimbledon have spent just £100,000 in the last six years. There is a serious gulf in quality, even accounting for the nine changes made by Pellegrini tonight. Yarmolenko has been slowly eased in, making three appearances from the bench so far, while Lucas Perez is still settling and Issa Diop likewise - all three will need to be alert tonight.

7.27pmPellegrini has also pointed out that United have faced Liverpool and Arsenal away in their first three outings, with the loss to Bournemouth the only serious disappointment so far. OK, spending £100m and still losing 4-0 to the Reds is disappointing, but the Hammers will not be the last side to ship four goals at Anfield this term. There were also positives to take from the Emirates Stadium, where West Ham more than held their own for 90% of the match.

7.29pmFelipe Anderson in particular looked impressive, constantly popping up in gaps and proving a real thorn in Arsenal's side. Marko Arnautovic, absent today because of a knee injury picked up in North London, also maintained his impressive record by finding the net, while in goal Lukasz Fabianski has settled well and will no doubt earn the Hammers a fair few points this term. It is now a case of getting some wins on the board and Pellegrini's men should have an enjoyable season.

7.31pmMomentum is, as ever, key for Pellegrini and his men, but West Ham have just one more shot at getting points on the board - at home to newly-promoted Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday - before the two-week international break. Then comes a trip to Everton and home games against Chelsea and Manchester United, so West Ham are going to have to click into gear soon. The worst case scenario is that they once again find themselves in a relegation battle come the New Year.

7.33pmWest Ham have reached the last eight of the EFL Cup in back-to-back seasons, before losing to Manchester United and more recently Arsenal - that latter game, if I remember correctly, was an absolute bore settled by a late goal for the Gunners. Supporters would no doubt welcome another cup run, with a place in the top six almost certainly out of the equation in terms of their Premier League aspirations.

7.35pmAll eyes were also on West Ham 12 months ago at this stage when they travelled to Cheltenham Town following a slow start to their Premier League campaign, but they passed the test that night with a 2-0 win at Whaddon Road. They then went on to beat Bolton Wanderers 3-0 at the London Stadium and Tottenham Hotspur 3-2 at Wembley Stadium in a famous victory over their arch-rivals.

7.37pmGetting past that quarter-final stage is the next challenge for United, as they attempt to end their long-running wait for some silverware. The £100m splashed out on new players, on top of pulling off a coup by landing Pellegrini - making him the third-highest paid boss in the division in the process - means that the Hammers really do have to start challenging for honours and not battle relegation on a seemingly annual basis.

7.39pmPREVIOUS MEETINGS! This will be the first ever meeting between these two sides. The last time that West Ham United faced a new opponent was also in the EFL Cup two years ago when overcoming Accrington Stanley on home soil.

7.41pmWith kickoff at Kingsmeadow now less than five minutes away, let us check out some pre-match thoughts from both camps.

Neal Ardley: "I think the key for us is to say it's a free hit in many ways. No one expects us to win but within the camp we feel we can. It's a free hit. The pressure will be on them and not us in our eyes. It's a cup game under floodlights with the TV cameras there. I think it's a great, exciting game - if you can't get excited for it then you shouldn't be in football. I think we know if West Ham are really, really at it, and on song, it's going to be awfully difficult for us to get a result."

Manuel Pellegrini: "You can never enjoy a 3-1 defeat but for the most part I think we created chances, we played as a big team and played in the opposite side not just playing for a result as we played against Arsenal away. It is a style that this team will continue to play in the future and I am absolutely sure and I hope that the fans also continue to support because the team is in the current way and we are going to win more than we lose."

7.43pmArdley sees this match as a "free hit" for Wimbledon, which is fair enough when you take the two-division gap into account. Wimbledon have got off the boil since beating Fleetwood Town in their opening league fixture, being held to two goalless draws and losing a couple since then, yet opponents West Ham do not have a victory of any sort next to their name. Pellegrini believes that his side's luck will soon change, and he had better hope that it begins with a win here tonight.

A dejected Jack Wilshere during the Premier League game between Liverpool and West Ham United on August 12, 2018© Reuters

1 minKICKOFF:  Wimbledon, seeking a first ever Premier League scalp, get us up and running at Kingsmeadow. The Dons pushed Liverpool all the way here in the FA Cup not so long ago - their only home match against top-flight opposition.


3 minThat man Joe Pigott gives Wimbledon a shock early lead here with a little over a minute played! West Ham conceded a needless corner, failing to clear a routine ball into the box, and from the set piece Pigott climbed highest to nod past Adrian, who got a hand to the ball but could not keep it out.

Joe Pigott scores the opener during the EFL Cup second-round game between AFC Wimbledon and West Ham United on August 28, 2018© Reuters

5 minPigott now has four goals in six-and-a-bit games this season. The striker scored in the Dons' 2-1 win at Portsmouth in the last round and has his side on course for a place in the third round... just the 85 minutes to hold on for!

7 minWest Ham's first serious attack of the evening comes to very little. Javier Hernandez helped the ball on to Yarmolenko out on the right, but the full debutant was too reliant on his left foot and could not pick out a teammate when a cross eventually arrived.

9 minA first effort for the Hammers, who have been left a little shaken by that early Joe Pigott goal. Pablo Zabaleta with a cross for Robert Snodgrass, who could not quite keep his headed attempt down. Up the other end, Hanson shoots wide from an offside position.

11 minArdley will be absolutely delighted with the way the opening 11 minutes have panned out here. An early goal for his side and little to deal with at the other end of the field - West Ham will surely only improve as this one goes on.

13 minYELLOW CARD!  Pedro Obiang is shown the game's first yellow card, presumably for dissent. A loose ball in the West Ham box is gobbled up by Adrian, who probably should have done better with Joe Pigott's early goal after getting across to the ball.

15 minCHANCE!  A big chance goes begging for Andriy Yarmolenko to net on his full debut. A nice little ball into his path from Javier Hernandez, and the Ukrainian did well to set himself for the shot, only to sky it over from seven yards.

17 minSAVE!  Pedro Obiang's shot from range is right down the middle for Tom King to gather. Andriy Yarmolenko then had an effort from a similar range kept out. The visitors have stepped things up over the last four or five minutes here.

19 minWest Ham are the side on top, coming close with a few efforts in the last five minutes. It is Wimbledon who lead, though, thanks to a 74-second goal from in-form striker Joe Pigott.

20 minRED CARD!  A big, big moment in this match as Rod McDonald has just been shown a second yellow card. Javier Hernandez would have got on the end of Robert Snodgrass's cross, if not for a tug on his shirt from McDonald. Right call from the referee.

22 minWest Ham were well on top before that red and will now fancy their chances of netting a couple of goals in the remaining three quarters of the match. Yarmolenko is in acres of space down the right, but he gets his cross all wrong and sends it over the bar.

24 minA dangerous corner into the box from Robert Snodgrass somehow goes right the way through. There was a claim from Yarmolenko for a shove, but the referee was right to wave it away. Constant pressure from the Premier League visitors now.

26 minCLOSE!  The chances keep on coming for West Ham now. Yarmolenko is involved in everything at the moment, and from the latest delivery into the box Javier Hernandez heads narrowly wide. The ball was behind the Mexican so that was far from easy.

28 minAFC WIMBLEDON SUB! Will Nightingale is brought on in place of goalscorer Joe Pigott - a striker for a centre-back following that early sending-off for Rod McDonald. Ardley almost seemed to apologise to Pigott for having to sacrifice him.

30 minHalf an hour played at Kingsmeadow and we are still on course of a big upset. West Ham trail to a goal after 74 seconds from Joe Pigott which, despite racking up a number of openings, remains the difference between the two sides.

32 minSAVE!  Robert Snodgrass attempts to loop the ball over Tom King via his head, but the home goalkeeper comfortably gathered. The Hammers have been on top for a good 20 minutes now, but they are struggling to get away any half-decent efforts.

34 minWest Ham continuing to knock on the door, boasting 81% of possession in this London derby. Declan Rice, born just down the road from here, is wayward with his shot. A little over 10 minutes of the first half left to play at Kingsmeadow.

36 minA reminder that Wimbledon are down to 10 men due to two bookings in quick succession for Rod McDonald. Joe Pigott had given them a surprise lead 11 minutes beforehand, and we remain at 1-0 as half time approaches in this second-round tie.

38 minWimbledon not really interested in attacking at the moment, but you cannot really blame them as they are a man light and a goal ahead. West Ham may have dominated the ball, but Ardley's men are looking comfortable enough as we edge towards the midway point.

40 minA good challenge from Garratt prevents Zabaleta from picking out a teammate. The home side, positioned 15th in the third tier, have five minutes to see through before they are able to regroup.

42 minPellegrini will be after more penetration in the second half. West Ham have had a few half-chances in this first half, but only one serious clear-cut opportunity, which Andriy Yarmolenko failed to make the most of.

44 minYarmolenko is seeing so much of the ball in this first half. The summer signing again gets in behind, but instead of picking out a teammate he found a player in blue who was waiting to clear the ball. Lucas Perez's cross from the left is also easily dealt with.

45+1 minOFF THE LINE!  Will Nightingale, brought on as a replacement for the dismissed McDonald, is in the right place at the right time to stop Yarmolenko's looping header from crossing the line. The same man was there to prevent Lucas Perez from converting four yards out.


8.35pmThe referee blows for half time, meaning that we are 45 minutes away from a big upset in the second round of the EFL Cup. Joe Pigott gave AFC Wimbledon a two-minute lead and, despite being reduced to 10 men through Rod McDonald's red card, the Dons have held on against their Premier League opponents.

8.38pmWimbledon have lost their only two previous matches against top-flight opposition, but they got off to a dream start here as Joe Pigott powered Mitch Pinnock's corner past Adrian with 74 seconds played. West Ham, showing nine changes from their 3-1 loss at Arsenal, should have been level 15 minutes in, only for Andriy Yarmolenko - making his full debut alongside Lucas Perez - to sky over the bar from seven yards.

8.41pmYarmolenko's next shot was right at Tom King, as was Pedro Obiang's attempt from the edge of the box as the visitors pushed for a leveller. United's quest to find a route back into the game was boosted just a under a quarter of the way through when Rod McDonald picked up two yellow cards in quick succession, the second for a pull on Javier Hernandez's shirt 19 yards out.

8.44pmThe opportunities kept on coming for the Hammers, with Hernandez glancing a cross wide and Robert Snodgrass looping one into the hands of a grateful King. Wimbledon survived a scare right at the end of the first half when Will Nightingale, brought on for goalscorer Pigott as Neal Ardley sacrificed a striker, stopped Yarmolenko's header right on the line.


AFC WIMBLEDON: McDonnell, Purrington, Thomas, Nightingale, Appiah, Barcham, Wordsworth

WEST HAM UNITED: Fabianski, Balbuena, Masuaku, Cullen, Holland, Felipe Anderson, Antonio

West Ham United's Michail Antonio looks dejected during the game against Liverpool on February 24, 2018© Reuters

46 minKICKOFF:  Four shots on target for West Ham United in that first half, but nothing to really trouble Tom King between the sticks. An improvement is required from the Hammers in this second half, or else it will be four defeats from four for Pellegrini. Felipe Anderson is on for Pedro Obiang.

48 minNo great surprise to see Pellegrini take off a holding midfielder, as Wimbledon are not really interested in attacking. Felipe Anderson impressed at the Emirates Stadium and needs to replicate that performance over these next 43 minutes.

50 minNo real difference in terms of the flow of the game, as you would expects, as West Ham continue to get players into the box. Their latest cross, this time from the left, is far too close to Tom King and the goalkeeper is able to collect.

52 minNightingale with an error and the ball drops for Zabaleta to put his boot through it. The ball struck a Wimbledon player 15 yards out, though, and the hosts are able to get the ball away - for a few seconds, at least!

54 minFelipe Anderson's cross from the left has far too much on it for Andriy Yarmolenko at the back post. It is just not happening for the Hammers this evening, and Manuel Pellegrini will surely be feeling a little concerned right about now.

56 minSAVE!  Javier Hernandez with a couple of efforts in the opening 10 minutes of the second period, this latest one coming via a flicked header. It was improvisation at its finest, which he is an expert at, but again it was right at Tom King.

58 minSHOT!  Aaron Cresswell leaves the ball for Felipe Anderson to strike. It was an audacious one, with the ball 25 yards from goal and the angle against the Brazilian, but he came close as it was thumped into the side-netting.

60 minWimbledon have been down to 10 men for 40 minutes now, and still West Ham are struggling to find a way through. Getting the ball into the final third is not much of a problem; creating a clear-cut opportunity is.

62 minMore great defending from Wagstaff to put Javier Hernandez off right in front of goal after Andriy Yarmolenko again got in behind. West Ham need two goals to win the match, while one will set up a penalty shootout at Kingsmeadow.


65 minHe scored an own goal on his debut at Arsenal a few days back, well Issa Diop may just have saved West Ham from a big upset. The young Frenchman was given far too much time and space when picking up the ball 30 yards from goal, carrying it to the edge of the box and unleashing a shot past Tom King.

67 minOFF THE BAR!  Issa Diop comes close to bagging a second goal in pretty much as many minutes! The centre-back got in front of his man at a corner and powered a header against the frame of the goal. Wimbledon having to seriously hold on now.

69 minSAVE!  Pablo Zabaleta is effectively playing as a left-sided forward now. The South American looks up and spots Javier Hernandez near the penalty spot, but his teammate's shot is a little miscued and was never going to find its way past Tom King.

71 minAFC WIMBLEDON SUB! Anthony Wordsworth is on for Mitch Pinnock in the middle of the park for the final 20 minutes. That is two changes made by Ardley now, and a third will surely soon follow as fatigue is playing a factor.

73 minYarmolenko smashes the ball wide from range, bringing an end to his side's latest attacking move. Up the other end, a rare Wimbledon attack is thwarted by Aaron Cresswell. Pellegrini continues to hold off from making a second change.

75 minWest Ham's possession count has edged to 86% now - it is one-way traffic at Kingsmeadow, as you would expect given the circumstances. The hosts need to hold on for a further 15 minutes; their reward being a penalty shootout.

77 minThis really would be some achievement for Wimbledon if they can see through these next 13 minutes. Not only to have held a Premier League club, but to have done it with 10 men for more than three quarters of the game.

79 minI'm reluctant to say West Ham deserve a winner as, despite completely bossing the match, they have not showed enough quality in the final third. Their goal came from a long-range drive via central defender Issa Diop.

81 minSUBS! Ghana international striker Kwesi Appiah is on for James Hanson, giving the Dons a different option in attack. A change for West Ham, too, as Michail Antonio is brought on in place of Lucas Perez out wide.


84 minThey have left it late, but surely West Ham United are through to round three with this headed goal from Angelo Ogbonna. Robert Snodgrass's cross from the right dropped to the centre-back at the back post, and he stuck out a leg to convert into the empty net.

86 minSo, so cruel on Wimbledon who, despite seeing barely any of the ball, have defended well and looked good value to hold on for penalties. The onus is now on the League One hosts to find an equaliser, with four minutes of normal time to play.

88 minWimbledon struggling to really get going in an attacking sense, having spent so long defending their goal. The irony for West Ham is that, despite having so many quality attacking players on the pitch tonight, two centre-backs have saved them.

90 minThree minutes have been added on at Kingsmeadow. West Ham look the more likely to score the game's third goal, in truth, and it now looks certain that they will get off the mark with their first win this term at the fourth attempt.


90+3 minThere will be no upset at Kingsmeadow, as Javier Hernandez has just made certain of the victory for West Ham United at the very death. A long ball forward was pounced on by the Mexican, who rounded the keeper and kept his cool to make it 3-1.

Javier Hernandez celebrates scoring West Ham United's third goal against AFC Wimbledon with Issa Diop on August 28, 2018© Reuters


9.45pmThe full-time whistle sounds at Kingsmeadow, where West Ham United have survived a big scare by overcoming 10-man AFC Wimbledon 3-1. The Hammers were behind just over a minute into the game but, aided by Rod McDonald's red card, they scored three times in he final 30 minutes to book their place in round three.

9.47pmThat concludes Sports Mole's live text coverage of events from this EFL Cup tie. An on-the-whistle report can be found by clicking here, and you can relive all of the night's other action right here. Thanks for joining!

9.47pmThat concludes Sports Mole's live text coverage of events from this EFL Cup tie. An on-the-whistle report can be found by clicking here, and you can relive the night's other action by clicking here. Thanks for joining!

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Manuel Pellegrini in charge of Manchester City in May 2016
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