Football: Roberts strikes lucky for Dons
Wimbledon 2 Leicester City 1
Monday 16 March 1998
Wimbledon 2 Leicester City 1
ANDY ROBERTS made the shortest move in English football when he was transferred for pounds 1.6m by Crystal Palace to their Selhurst Park tenants, Wimbledon, last week.
It seemed that the 23-year-old Roberts had simply swapped one relegation struggle for another, but he set the Dons on their way to a vital home win over Leicester on Saturday, while Palace's problems deepened with defeat at Aston Villa.
Roberts scored Wimbledon's 14th-minute opener - his first goal in the Premiership in only his second game for the Dons after failing to hit the mark in 30 games with Palace - but he needed a great deal of luck.
"Michael Hughes got the ball about 30 yards out and he played it in front of me," Roberts said. "Spencer Prior got there first with a block tackle and I just stuck my foot there and he booted it on to me. But it was nice to see it loop over the keeper."
Robbie Savage pulled a goal back for Leicester when keeper Neil Sullivan dropped a hanging free-kick as he collided with his team-mate Alan Kimble. The midfielder Michael Hughes struck the winner on 62 minutes, with Leicester having a last-minute penalty appeal for a foul on Emile Heskey turned down.
"It's a pity the home victory wasn't with Palace but hopefully I've moved on to better things," Roberts said. "At Palace, the problem was just confidence. The players still have a laugh on the training ground but you need confidence and a bit of luck."
"Here I was told it was just one big family, which it is and everyone sticks together."
The family welcome included being stripped and thrown into a training- pitch puddle on his first day.
"He's going to get better and better,"Joe Kinnear, the Wimbledon manager, said. "I was a bit surprised that Palace were willing to sell him, but you just keep knocking on doors and sometimes they open for you."
Goals: Roberts (14) 1-0; Savage (57) 1-1; M Hughes (62) 2-1.
Wimbledon: Sullivan; Cunningham, Kimble, Blackwell, Roberts, Gayle, Perry, M Hughes, Ardley, Euell (Earle, 46), Leaburn. Substitutes not used: C Hughes, Heald (gk), Reeves, Clarke.
Leicester City: Keller; Walsh (Watts, 14), Lennon, Claridge, Heskey, Savage, Prior, Ullathorne, Marshall (Wilson, 81), Guppy, Zagorakis. Substitutes not used: Campbell, Fenton, Arphexad (gk).
Referee: M Riley (Leeds).
Booked: Wimbledon: Roberts, Blackwell. Leicester: Savage.
Man of the match: M Hughes.
Latest in Sport
Chelsea injury news: Cesc Fabregas and Branislav Ivanovic could join Diego Costa on the sidelines for crucial Manchester City clash
Australian Open 2015: Thanks to Amelie Mauresmo, it's no longer Andy Murray against the world
Fantasy Premier League: Invest in Arsenal to climb the ranks in Gameweek 23
Manchester United sign former Manchester City prospect Sadiq El Fitouri on advice from Phil Neville and Paul Scholes
Chelsea vs Manchester City: Manuel Pellegrini pours scorn on anti-Chelsea 'campaign' but refuses to discuss Jose Mourinho's 'Pellegrino' slight
- 1 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
King Abdullah dead: We can't afford not to hold Saudi Arabia's royals to account
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: SEN Teacher We have a fantastic special n...
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: My client is an 11-18 all ability co-educat...
£100 - £150 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Year 6 Teacher Birmingham Jan 2015...
£20000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...