BY MAX HALL
The Dons strained every sinew and pinned Millwall back in their own half for much of the second half but couldn’t find an answer to Murray Wallace’s first-half goal as the Lions secured their third FA Cup quarter-final in six years.
Wimbledon flew out of the blocks, Shane McLoughlin’s cross from the right in the second minute picking out a near-post run from Joe Pigott who volleyed against the right-hand post.
Millwall were ahead in the fifth minute, though, as Ryan Leonard dug out an inviting cross from the right which saw Wallace bury a thumping header which gave Dons keeper Aaron Ramsdale no chance.
The hosts had the best chances for the remainder of the half without scoring, Michael Folivi sending a daisy cutter narrowly wide in the 25thminute, Toby Sibbick’s cross three minutes later deflecting just over Jordan Archer’s crossbar and the same player picking out Deji Oshilaja in the 33rdminute for the defender to head over.
Millwall should have had a second 10 minutes after the break when Lee Gregory left Will Nightingale for dead and crossed to Aiden O’Brien and the Irish international should have done better than fire weakly at Ramsdale.
Jake Cooper fired wide for the visitors from a Gregory knock-down in the 61st minute but Wimbledon were fired up by the 62ndminute introduction of substitutes Dylan Connolly and Mitch Pinnock and were denied a penalty only by an offside flag after Mahlon Romeo floored Dons half-time sub Andy Barcham in the area in the 70th minute.
A Sibbick error from a long Archer clearance gave Gregory a sight of goal in the 77th minute but Barcham made a tremendous goal-saving tackle.
Leonard had a low effort deflected wide six minutes from time and Ramsdale dashed off his line to deny Jed Wallace three minutes later before Connolly volleyed wide at the other end and, despite a late barrage from the hosts, the visiting back line held firm.
AFC Wimbledon (3-5-2): Ramsdale (GK), Oshilaja, Nightingale, McDonald, Sibbick, McLoughlin, Hartigan (Pinnock, 62), Wordsworth, Garratt (Barcham HT), Folivi, Pigott (Connolly, 62). Subs not used: McDonnell, Thomas, Wagstaff, Soares.
Millwall (4-4-2): Archer, Romeo, Pearce, Cooper, M Wallace, J Wallace, Leonard, Williams, Ferguson, O’Brien (Elliott, 64), Gregory (Hutchinson, 93). Subs not used: Martin (GK), Tunnicliffe, Morrison, Skalak, Hanson.
Ref: Jonathan Moss.
IMAGES BY KEITH GILLARD
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