Coventry carry on climbing

Wimbledon 0 Coventry City 1
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The Independent Online

David Thompson scored the decisive goal at Selhurst Park last night to enable Coventry to move level with Crystal Palace and Wolverhampton at the top of the First Division.

Following the departure of manager Gordon Strachan from Highfield Road, Roland Nilsson – thought of initially as a stop-gap to steady the ship – has guided Coventry on a nine-game unbeaten run.

His influence on his team has been nearly as remarkable as fellow Swede Sven Goran Eriksson's success with the England team.

"I think we showed a willingness to work hard and get a result even when we were having a bad day," Nilsson said.

"This is the most important thing and the team needs to take this with them for the rest of the season."

It is a very different story for the Wimbledon manager Terry Burton, as the Dons' midweek Selhurst Park jinx continued, with the home side once more failing to earn a league victory, a run which stretches back to a 1997 win against Barnsley.

He said: "I think we outplayed them for parts of the game, but struggled in the final third. We worked hard, but missed the final ball."

Wimbledon's lack of goals would suggest they lack invention but the guile of teenager Joel McAnuff and the supply of through-balls from Michael Hughes should have brought the Dons greater rewards especially from the likes of the Republic of Ireland international David Connolly. The former Watford striker went close on 24 minutes and again eight minutes after the re-start.

The visitors rarely looked like breaching the Wimbledon defence until Thompson's 75th-minute goal. After that the home side pressed hard for an equaliser but Nilsson's side remained resolute.

Wimbledon: Davis, Cunningham, Brown, Darlington, Holloway (Agyemang, 78), Connolly, Hughes, Roberts, McAnuff, Cooper, Shipperley. Substitutes not used: Willmott, Hawkins, Karlsson, Heald (gk).

Coventry City: Goram, Edworthy, Breen, Thompson, Shaw, Carsley, Hughes, Bothroyd, Konjic, Safri, Delorge (Hall, 56). Substitutes not used: Quinn, Guerrero, Martinez, Montgomery (gk).

Referee: P Joslin (Newark).

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