June 13, 2024

AFC Wimbledon boss gives his verdict on opening League Two clashes – with Grimsby away followed by Wrexham at home

Johnnie Jackson has given his verdict on AFC Wimbledon’s opening two fixtures of the 2023-24 League Two season.

The Dons head to Grimsby, who they played on the final day of the 2022-23 season, for the opening game of the season.

Jackson’s side suffered a 1-0 defeat at Blundell Park, with Isaac Ogundere’s early own goal the difference.

Wimbledon have already signed five new players, with Jake Reeves, Omar Bugiel, Josh Neufville, Ryan McLean and James Tilley all added to the squad.

“It’s interesting,” Jackson told the South London Press, looking ahead to the first two fixtures of the season.

“It’s quite ironic that Grimsby was the last one today and now we’re going back there at the first game of the next season.

“It’s quite amusing. But I like to think that we will be going up there in a lot better shape than we went up there last season.

“Hopefully it will be a completely different game from what the last one was.”

Wrexham – owned by Hollywood actors Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds – will be the first visitors to Plough Lane at the start of the 2023-24 campaign.

They were promoted to League Two after winning the National League with 111 points.

Jackson played under Wrexham boss Phil Parkinson at Charlton and Colchester, making 41 appearances and scoring 13 goals for the former Bradford boss.

“A lot of people would have been looking out for the Wrexham one straight away, just with the attention that they get due to the story behind them,” added Jackson.

“When you couple that with our own story, that’s a fixture that a lot of people are looking out for.

“It will be nice to have it at our place. It will be interesting for me because I played for Phil Parkinson in my career but haven’t come up against him in management yet.”

PICTURE: KEITH GILLARD

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