Tag Archives: bitter

Sir Bobby Charlton says Sir Alex Ferguson will carry on at Manchester United "forever"

Fergie's time will never end: United legend Charlton backs Ferguson to 'go on for ever'

By
John Edwards

PUBLISHED:

14:25 GMT, 10 April 2013

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UPDATED:

17:06 GMT, 10 April 2013

Sir Bobby Charlton fired an ominous warning to Manchester United’s main title rivals by insisting Sir Alex Ferguson looks like he will ‘go on forever.’

The United manager is closing in on his 13th Barclays Premier League crown at the ripe old age of 71, but any thoughts of bowing out after avenging last season’s late surrender to bitter rivals Manchester City could not be further from his mind, according to Sir Bobby.

‘There is nothing in his posture that suggests he is beginning to tire,’ said the United director. ‘Far from being tired, he has the same enthusiasm as ever. He is an unbelievable character, and I don’t see him ever losing that drive and enthusiasm.

Carry on, Fergie: Sir Bobby Charlton says Sir Alex Ferguson will go on for ever at Manchester United

Carry on, Fergie: Sir Bobby Charlton says Sir Alex Ferguson will go on for ever at Manchester United

‘He tried to retire once, and it was an absolute failure. Everyone wants to know the answer to that, because he can’t go on for ever. But I look at him and think that’s exactly what he will do.

‘He is a fantastic lover of football, and he is very clever when it comes to identifying a player he wants and coming to the board about it. He knows exactly what to do in those situations, and, to be fair, we try to give him exactly what he wants.

‘We haven’t got many directors at Old
Trafford, and we adopt the view that we need good players to be a top
team and that the manager is the best person to decide on who they
should be.

United heroes: Sir Bobby Charlton and Denis Law get together at Soccerex in Manchester

United heroes: Sir Bobby Charlton and Denis Law get together at Soccerex in Manchester

'We look after the business side of things, Alex the football side, and we give him what he wants. We leave pretty much everything to Alex, in a football sense.

‘The rivalry with City, and the way they have re-emerged, has probably provided him with an extra incentive. He just hates losing, no matter who the opposition are, and the defeat on Monday night will have hurt him.

'But the great thing is, he will pinpoint exactly why we lost and make sure it doesn’t happen again.’

Class of 68: Charlton exchanges shirts with former Benfica and Portugal legend Eusebio

Class of 68: Charlton exchanges shirts with former Benfica and Portugal legend Eusebio

A World Cup winner in 1966, Sir Bobby despairs of England ever lifting the trophy again.

‘When I’m asked about our prospects, I always feel obliged to say we’ve got a chance, but really it’s a fool’s errand,’ he said. ‘If so many places in Premier League teams are taken up by foreign players, we’ve got no chance.

‘Spain are absolutely my favourites for the finals in Brazil. Heaven forbid, but Germany are in with a chance as well, because they are so well coached, and Holland seem to be re-emerging as well.’

Wilfried Zaha swears at Leeds fans over Manchester United abuse

Zaha gives Leeds fans the middle finger after abuse over transfer to Man United

By
Rik Sharma

PUBLISHED:

21:55 GMT, 9 March 2013

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UPDATED:

10:31 GMT, 10 March 2013

Manchester United's new signing Wilfried Zaha was spotted swearing at Leeds United fans on Saturday.

The Crystal Palace attacker was being berated by Leeds supporters over his transfer to their bitter rivals.

He responded by grinning and sticking up his middle finger at them.

Response: Wilfried Zaha had a message for the Leeds fans giving him stick

Response: Wilfried Zaha had a message for the Leeds fans giving him stick

Top form: Zaha again showed the star quality yesterday that earned a move to Manchester United this summer

Top form: Zaha again showed the star quality yesterday that earned a move to Manchester United this summer

Red Devils fans took to Twitter to praise their new signing, saying he was 'getting into practice'.

Whether Sir Alex Ferguson would approve of this gesture is another matter entirely.

Eyes on the ball: Zaha used his head to get past Leeds player Lee Peltier

Eyes on the ball: Zaha used his head to get past Leeds player Lee Peltier

Wing wizard: Zaha cuts inside to beat Leeds United's Stephen Warnock

Wing wizard: Zaha cuts inside to beat Leeds United's Stephen Warnock

Palace fought hard and earned a 2-2 draw with Leeds thanks to a late goal by Glenn Murray.

The Eagles frontman hit a brace – and so did Leeds' Steve Morison – as they shared the spoils at Selhurst Park.

Bangladesh cancel Pakistan tour due to security concerns

Bangladesh cancel Pakistan tour due to security concerns

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UPDATED:

12:20 GMT, 31 December 2012

Bangladesh have called off their upcoming tour of Pakistan because of security concerns.

No international cricket has been played in Pakistan since the Sri Lankan team bus was attacked in Lahore in 2009.

Six Sri Lankan players were wounded when
gunmen opened fire on their coach as they were being driven to the Gaddafi Stadium for a Test match.

The news will be a bitter pill to swallow for Pakistan having recently resolved another major dispute to resume bilateral ties with India after five years.

Wounded: Six Sri Lankan players were hurt when their bus was shot at in Lahore in 2009

Wounded: Six Sri Lankan players were hurt when their bus was shot at in Lahore in 2009

Wounded: Six Sri Lankan players were hurt when their bus was shot at in Lahore in 2009

'Bangladesh will not visit Pakistan for now,' said Bangladesh Cricket Board president Nazmul Hasan.

'We have noticed that the security situation in Pakistan has not improved significantly, (it has) rather deteriorated.

'In this circumstance, we think it will not be very wise to tour. We
have conveyed our decision to Pakistan already. We are observing the
situation. If the situation improves we will keep our commitment.

'We have made a commitment to travel to Pakistan but we believe that the security of players and officials are the most important thing.'

Pakistan have been playing 'home' series in the United Arab Emirates as well as hosting Australia in England in 2010 for two Tests and two Twenty20s.

They recently hosted two Twenty20s against a World XI featuring Sanath Jayasuriya and Andre Nel.

Wesley Sneijder transfer latest: Liverpool make 9.5m bid

Liverpool make first move for Sneijder with 9.5m bid for United and Spurs target

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UPDATED:

11:23 GMT, 30 December 2012

Liverpool have reportedly offered 9.5million for out-of-favour Wesley Sneijder while Manchester United and Spurs remain on high alert.

The Inter Milan ace has been left feeling isolated at the San Siro after snubbing a suggested annual pay cut of 1.6m.

Liverpool are first out of the blocks, according to Gazzetta dello Sport's front page, while their Premier League rivals are confident little more than 11m will secure a deal.

Italian job: United and Spurs are in the hunt for Sneijder

Italian job: United and Spurs are in the hunt for Sneijder

The 28-year old was furious with the
club's proposed salary cut and demanded a move, pressurising the Serie A
outfit to sell him for virtually the same 15m euro fee they paid Real
Madrid in 2009.

'Clearly it's best for everyone concerned that in January I am transferred,' he said defiantly.

'If that doesn't happen then I will stay. I have a contract with Inter until 2015.'

Manager Andrea Stramaccioni has since dropped Sneijder from the squad over the bitter dispute.

His wage bill is currently 200,000
per week and Inter will be relieved to offload the financial burden.
Liverpool's coffers, however, are unlikely to be able to stretch to such
levels.

Talk of a move to Tottenham Hotspur
for the Holland international cooled when his agent told Dutch paper
Algemeen Dagblad: 'There is nothing, absolutely nothing true about
that.'

He has previously been tipped as Sir
Alex Ferguson’s dream replacement for Paul Scholes but Inter’s inflated
demands of 40m plus his phenomenal 10m-a-year wage was an immovable
obstacle for Manchester United.

Make that move: Liverpool are reported to have made a bid for Sneijder

Make that move: Liverpool are reported to have made a bid for Sneijder

Sign him up: Spurs fans would love to see Sneijder at White Hart Lane

Sign him up: Spurs fans would love to see Sneijder at White Hart Lane

David Silva calls upon Manchester City players to close gap on Manchester United

Angry Silva calls upon Man City players to close gap on United by end of February

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UPDATED:

11:15 GMT, 29 December 2012

David Silva says his Manchester City team-mates were angry after their Boxing Day defeat at Sunderland, and has called upon the champions to close the seven-point gap on rivals United by the end of February.

City found themselves seven points off the pace to defend their Premier League title after being beaten 1-0 at the Stadium of Light on Wednesday, as Sir Alex Ferguson’s men came from behind three times to beat Newcastle 4-3 in a thrilling encounter.

But Silva believes City, who were dumped out of the Champions League in the group stages for the second year running, still have the quality to make up the ground over their bitter rivals, starting with a win today against Norwich at Carrow Road.

Battle cry: David Silva is determined to catch Manchester United at the top of the Premier League

Battle cry: David Silva is determined to catch Manchester United at the top of the Premier League

He told The Sun: ‘The defeat in Sunderland was a hard blow for us. But as we know that the Premier League is very open and if you give away chances you can be beaten.

‘Even so, there was a lot of anger in the dressing room — and not only from the coach. Those three points were so important because in our situation they could make the difference between us winning and losing the title.

‘And really, if we do not win at places like Sunderland, it is nearly impossible to fight for the success in this league.

‘Perhaps being knocked out of Europe had an influence but now we need to react and to demonstrate that City are the English champions.

Plotting success: Sergio Aguero (right) and Joleon Lescott (left) in training yesterday

Plotting success: Sergio Aguero (right) and Joleon Lescott (left) in training yesterday

All smiled: Pablo Zabaleta (left), Carlos Tevez (centre) and Javi Garcia (right) wrap up at Carrington

All smiled: Pablo Zabaleta (left), Carlos Tevez (centre) and Javi Garcia (right) wrap up at Carrington

‘There is a long way to go — but we cannot allow United any more advantage at the top of the table. The future is in our own hands but we have already shown how powerful we can be during our worst moments during the past year.

‘Our goal this season was the Champions League — but now that chance has gone we want to win the Premier League and dedicate the achievement to our fans.’

United ran out victors in the first Manchester derby of the season after a last-gasp Robin van Persie free-kick at the Etihad.

Silva and Co know that taking three points will be vital when they seek revenge at Old Trafford on April 6 for what promises to be a thrilling second instalment.

Larking about: Mario Balotelli (centre) has a joke in the gym during training

Larking about: Mario Balotelli (centre) has a joke in the gym during training

Star man: Silva (left) is hoping for a win this afternoon at Norwich

Star man: Silva (left) is hoping for a win this afternoon at Norwich

Leeds v Chelsea classic clashes: It"s the neutrals" nightmare… but tonight"s tie is set to be another belter

Classic Leeds-Chelsea clashes: It's the neutrals' nightmare… but tonight's tie is set to be another belter

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UPDATED:

13:49 GMT, 19 December 2012

No one likes them, but we don't care… on this evidence tonight's clash between bitter rivals Leeds and Chelsea is set to be a classic.

It's a fixture which can lay claim to being a neutral's nightmare – you don't know who you'd rather see lose – but down the years these two titans have produced some memorable moments on the field.

Here Sportsmail picks some of our favourite moments between the Whites and the Blues, they're not necessarily the best matches but we defy you to not come over all misty-eyed at the nostalgia…

1970 – Chelsea 2-5 Leeds: 'Terry Cooper starts the goal riot'

Don Revie's famous Leeds United were 2-1 down at half-time but scored three goals in seven minutes in a remarkable turnaround that commentator Kenneth Wolstenholme described as a 'truly wonderful victory' which began when Terry Cooper started the 'goal riot'.

Check out the pitch and this rather special punditry from Johnny Giles and Sir Bobby Charlton…

1970 – FA Cup Final: Chelsea 2-2 Leeds… Replay: Chelsea 2-1 Leeds watched by 28million

It takes a special kind of fan – but most Leeds and Chelsea supporters – to appreciate the on-field brutality of the replay at Old Trafford, which was watched by a TV audience of 28 million.

Referee Eric Jennings let so much go that Hugh McIlvanney wrote: ‘At
times, it appeared that Mr Jennings would give a free-kick only on
production of a death certificate.’ There was one booking. David Elleray ‘re-refereed’ the game years later and said there should have been six reds and 20 yellows.

The Leeds great, Peter Lorimer, remarked that Chelsea ‘kicked everything above grass’. No foul was given for Eddie McCreadie’s kung-fu kick on Billy Bremner’s head. ‘It was just the way the game was played back then,’ Paul Madeley said on Monday, from Yorkshire. Fantastic stuff.

Winner: David Webb (left) heads home to win the 1970 FA Cup for Chelsea in the re0play at Old Trafford against Leeds as Terry Cooper (No 3) attempts to challenge

Winner: David Webb (left) heads home to win the 1970 FA Cup for Chelsea in the re0play at Old Trafford against Leeds as Terry Cooper (No 3) attempts to challenge

1972 – Chelsea 4-0 Leeds… but only because Lorimer was in goal

Way before the days teams could call a multi-million-pound goalkeeper off the bench, Leeds' David Harvey had to go off injured. Peter Lorimer left his right-wing posting to put the No 1 jersey on and Chelsea made hay.

It was very much a case of 'first-half good, second half not so good' for Hot-Shot Lorimer, who came over all Gary Sprake near the end.

Keep a special eye out for Peter Osgood's simply amazing sideburns – eat your heart out Bradley Wiggins – and the famous Leeds sock tassels. Classic.

Tassels and tussles: Leeds captain Billy Bremner tackles Chelsea's Steve Kember during the 1972 clash at Stamford Bridge as Johnny Giles looks on

Tassels and tussles: Leeds captain Billy Bremner tackles Chelsea's Steve Kember during the 1972 clash at Stamford Bridge as Johnny Giles looks on

1994 – Leeds 2-3 Chelsea… Whelan scores with a bicycle kick… yes, really… And Lukic gifts Chelsea win with a clanger… yes, again!

John Spencer, remember him He won this thriller for Chelsea at a sold-out Elland Road. The match had everything: A masterly performance from Gary McAllister, a Noel Whelan overhead kick, another John Lukic howler and some grand old names from the past: Philemon Masinga, Dmitri Kharine anyone

JOHN LUKIC

JOHN SPENCER

Long Johns: John Lukic (left) made a mistake in 1994 to allow John Spencer (right) to pounce for Chelsea

Bonus goals… Viduka (2008) Gudjohnsen (2003)

VIDEO: Top-class Mark Viduka finish (but take note of John Terry's awful positioning)…

MARK VIDUKA

Eidur Gudjohnsen

Goal-getters: Mark Viduka (left) and Eidur Gudjohnsen (right) became cult heroes at their clubs

Wowsers, Gudjohnsen's sensational overhead kick in January 2003 – it's no Ibra effort…

Leeds and Chelsea fans warned by police

Behave, or else! Leeds and Chelsea fans issued warning before bitter cup clash

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UPDATED:

22:28 GMT, 18 December 2012

Leeds and Chelsea supporters have been warned not to add another chapter to football’s season of shame on Wednesday night.

The clubs go head to head in a potentially explosive Capital One Cup quarter-final at Elland Road.

The two sets of fans have a long-running feud that stems back to the 1960s and, in a season already blighted by numerous off-the-field flashpoints, supporters have been told to behave themselves or face serious action.

No repeats: This Leeds fan ran onto the pitch and attacked visiting goalkeeper Chris Kirkland - and police have warned fans not to cause any trouble on Wednesday

No repeats: This Leeds fan ran onto the pitch and attacked visiting goalkeeper Chris Kirkland – and police have warned fans not to cause any trouble on Wednesday

West Yorkshire Police chief superintendent Paul Money said: ‘We want the focus of the day to be the action on the pitch and for it not to be overshadowed by violence or disorder.

'I would ask responsible fans, who make up the vast majority of all supporters, not to allow the minority element of unruly fans to spoil the game.

‘I will also ask the managers of both teams to speak to the players and ask them to avoid doing anything which may antagonise supporters of the opposition team.

‘Experienced football intelligence officers from the Metropolitan Police will be working alongside West Yorkshire officers to identify any troublemakers. We will not hesitate to take firm action against any fans who cause disorder or use violence.’

Leeds manager Neil Warnock said: ‘While I want the fans to be loud, we don’t want any of the bad behaviour we have seen from different sets of fans around the country this season and I ask both sets of fans to get behind their side without any of the unwanted problems.’

West Yorkshire Police will bolster their resources while Chelsea’s ticket allocation has been slashed from 5,000 to 3,000 in a bid to forestall potential problems.

Already this season, Rio Ferdinand has been hit by a coin, Chris Kirkland was attacked by an opposing fan and several players have issued complaints that racial slurs have been made against them by spectators.

Football's shame: Rio Ferdinand was hit by a coin during the Manchester Derby

Football's shame: Rio Ferdinand was hit by a coin during the Manchester Derby

Chelsea interim manager Rafa Benitez tried to play down the potential for trouble when he said he will offer to shake Warnock’s hand despite bad blood between the pair. The Leeds boss says he is undecided over a handshake as he holds him partly responsible for his Sheffield United team’s Premier League relegation in 2007.

Benitez, then manager of Liverpool, fielded a weakened side against struggling Fulham in the final weeks of the season.

He said: ‘Will I shake his hand I’m a professional so I will do my job. I’m a professional and have to behave.’

Benitez will hold talks with technical director Michael Emenalo about the club’s January transfer plans. Daniel Sturridge is set to join Liverpool next month so Chelsea will want a new striker, with Radamel Falcao a top target.

Simmer down: Rafael Benitez will try to keep a lid on any potential trouble by shaking Neil Warnock's hand

Simmer down: Rafael Benitez will try to keep a lid on any potential trouble by shaking Neil Warnock's hand

Mario Balotelli poses in camouflage onesie

Hidden in plain sight… Balotelli poses in camouflage onesie with matching car and quad bike

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UPDATED:

10:37 GMT, 3 December 2012

Many of us had suspicions about Mario Balotelli. The temper tantrums were a key sign.

But this onesie proves it – he really is a big baby.

Although the Twitter account the picture first emerged on was called out as a fake by Manchester City, it's definitely Mario we're looking at.

Camo king: Mario Balotelli seems to love camouflage, judging by his car, quad bike and now... his onesie

Camo king: Mario Balotelli seems to love camouflage, judging by his car, quad bike and now… his onesie

The club's official account tweeted: 'All those posing as him are fake. If he joins, we will let you know! #mcfc'.

Balotelli obviously likes the
camouflage style – his Bentley Continental GT and a quad bike are done
up in the same fashion as his comfy-looking onesie.

Although camouflage is designed to keep people hidden and under cover, that is not Balotelli's natural habitat.

He resides at the centre of attention
and is hoping to get the chance to be there on Sunday when City take on
bitter rivals Manchester United.

Why always him Balotelli scored a brace against Manchester United in last season's 6-1 win at Old Trafford

Why always him Balotelli scored a brace against Manchester United in last season's 6-1 win at Old Trafford

The Italian struck twice as City emerged 6-1 winners in the fixture at Old Trafford last season.

Not only did he play extremely well but he also revealed the now famous 'Why always me' t-shirt during the drubbing.

Don't be surprised to see him take his
shirt off to reveal a camouflage vest this time around – if Roberto
Mancini gives him the chance to play.

MK Dons 1 AFC Wimbledon 1: match report

MK Dons 2 AFC Wimbledon 1: Ecstasy to agony for travelling fans as cheeky late winner ends dream grudge match victory

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UPDATED:

15:17 GMT, 2 December 2012

Jon Otsemobor scored a last-gasp winner to send MK Dons into the FA Cup third round at the expense of bitter rivals AFC Wimbledon.

Jack Midson's diving header had looked set to earn Wimbledon a replay after cancelling out Stephen Gleeson's stunning opener, but Otsemobor flicked home in the last minute to break the visitors' hearts.

The match was the first between the two clubs since 1988 FA Cup winners Wimbledon FC were uprooted from south west London in 2003 and moved over 50 miles north of the capital to the Buckinghamshire town, before being renamed MK Dons the following year.

Stranded: Jon Otsemobor flicked home the winner for MK Dons in the dying minutes

Stranded: Jon Otsemobor flicked home the winner for MK Dons in the dying minutes

Match facts

Milton Keynes Dons: Martin, Otsemobor, Kay, Williams, Lewington, Gleeson, Potter, Bowditch, Chadwick, Balanta (Ismail 66), Lowe (Smith 80).

Subs not used: McLoughlin, Doumbe, MacDonald, Chicksen, Sekajja.

Goal: Midson 59, Otsemobor 90

AFC Wimbledon: Sullivan, Osano, Fenlon, Antwi, Mambo, Luke Moore (Johnson 81), Gregory, Long, Ajala, Harrison (Strutton 71), Midson.

Subs not used: Jaimez-Ruiz, Balkestein, Mitchel-King, McNaughton, Djilali.

Booked: Midson, L Moore, Ajala.

Goal: Gleeson 45.

Referee: Scott Mathieson (Cheshire)

Angry Wimbledon FC fans subsequently formed AFC Wimbledon from scratch in the Combined Counties League before enjoying a rapid rise up the football pyramid, and are now just one division below npower League One promotion challengers MK Dons.

The bad blood between the clubs was in evidence throughout, with both sets of fans goading the other, but in the main the match passed off without incident, save for a brief pitch invasion following Wimbledon's equaliser.

The hosts controlled the first half but they struggled to create clear chances in the face of a disciplined Wimbledon rearguard action.

Angelo Balanta came close when he curled the ball just wide of the post after a neat turn on the edge of the box before Gleeson broke the deadlock on the stroke of half-time, blasting a 30-yard shot into the top-right corner.

MK Dons burst out of the blocks after the break and skipper Dean Lewington had a 25-yard free-kick pushed over the crossbar by Neil Sullivan before Balanta and Dean Bowditch both lashed strikes into the side-netting.

Mobbed: MK Dons celebrate their last-gasp winner which dumped AFC Wimbledon out of the FA Cup

Mobbed: MK Dons celebrate their last-gasp winner which dumped AFC Wimbledon out of the FA Cup


In front: Stephen Gleeson opened the scoring for MK Dons with a stunning strike

In front: Stephen Gleeson opened the scoring for MK Dons with a stunning strike

Happy days: Gleeson celebrates with his team-mates after scoring the first goal

Happy days: Gleeson celebrates with his team-mates after scoring the first goal

But Midson made the most of a rare
Wimbledon counter-attack to equalise after 59 minutes, glancing a fine
diving header past David Martin from Toby Ajaya's cross.

A number of Wimbledon fans spilled onto the pitch following the goal, but stewards quickly restored order.

In a frantic finale, Ryan Lowe had a
goal ruled out for offside for Milton Keynes and Wimbledon skipper
Steven Gregory was denied by Martin before Otsemobor hung out a leg to
backheel substitute Zeli Ismail's mis-hit shot over Sullivan to spark
wild scenes of celebration for the hosts.

Level pegging: Jack Midson equalised for AFC Wimbledon (above) before celebrating with team-mates and fans

Level pegging: Jack Midson equalised for AFC Wimbledon (above) before celebrating with team-mates and fans

Players and fans celebrate as Jack Midson of AFC Wimbledon scores their first goal

Players and fans celebrate as Jack Midson of AFC Wimbledon scores their first goal

Crunch: Ryan Lowe of MK Dons is tackled by AFC Wimbledon's Luke Moore

Crunch: Ryan Lowe of MK Dons is tackled by AFC Wimbledon's Luke Moore

On the run: AFC Wimbledon's Stacy Long (right) sets up another attack for the visitors

On the run: AFC Wimbledon's Stacy Long (right) sets up another attack for the visitors

Battle: Luke Chadwick (right) and Steve Gregory fight for possession at stadium:mk

Battle: Luke Chadwick (right) and Steve Gregory fight for possession at stadium:mk

MK Dons v AFC Wimbledon FA Cup live

FA CUP LIVE: MK Dons v AFC Wimbledon – the action as it happens from stadium:mk

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UPDATED:

14:10 GMT, 2 December 2012

Follow Sportsmail's coverage of the FA Cup second round as bitter rivals MK Dons and AFC Wimbledon meet for the first time. Karl Robinson's MK Dons side are flying high in third place in League One and will go into the match as favourites against Neal Ardley's side, who are struggling near the foot of League Two.

MK Dons 1 AFC Wimbledon 1

Milton Keynes Dons: Martin, Otsemobor, Kay, Williams, Lewington, Gleeson, Potter, Bowditch, Chadwick, Balanta (Ismail 66), Lowe (Smith 80).

Subs not used: McLoughlin, Doumbe, MacDonald, Chicksen, Sekajja.

Goal: Midson 59.

AFC Wimbledon: Sullivan, Osano, Fenlon, Antwi, Mambo, Luke Moore (Johnson 81), Gregory, Long, Ajala, Harrison (Strutton 71), Midson.

Subs not used: Jaimez-Ruiz, Balkestein, Mitchel-King, McNaughton, Djilali.

Booked: Midson, L Moore.

Goal: Gleeson 45.

Referee: Scott Mathieson (Cheshire)

80 mins: Ryan Lowe is the man to make way for Smith. Wimbledon are growing in confidence though with Ajala enjoy some joy down the right flank.

Sportsmail's Matt Barlow at stadium:mk: 'MK Dons preparing to send on the former England striker Alan Smith.'

77 mins: As things stand then we're all set for a replay. One thing that is for sure is that the second half has been a far better spectacle than the first.

Sportsmail's Matt Barlow at stadium:mk: 'Interested to see the impact of MK teenager Zeli Ismail, on loan from Wolves. There’s been a lot of hype about him, born in Albania and playing for England youth teams. He came on and set up a goal for Ryan Lowe to convert but the flag was up for offside.'

70 mins: MK Dons have a goal ruled out as Zeli Ismail is rightly flagged offside as he centres for Ryan Lowe to tap in.

Sportsmail's Matt Barlow at stadium:mk: 'That’s caused a stir. A diving header from Midson levels and AFC fans fail to control their euphoria. Some of them spill onto the pitch to celebrate with the players as the home fans boo and whistle. Midson is booked for his role in inciting the invasion as AFC fans find their voices again. Yellow and blue balloons are bouncing in the away end again and it is still very chilly here.'

GOAL!!! MK Dons 1 AFC Wimbledon 1 (Midson)

Can you believe it! And right in front of home fans… A neat little move started by Midson sees the big forward brilliantly glance home a header from Agala's cross and the travelling support go wild… and there's a pitch invasion! There's a delay in play as the stewards try to deal with it. Midson sensibly tries to calm the away fans down.

Strength in numbers: Over 3,000 Wimbledon fans made the trip to MK Dons

Strength in numbers: Over 3,000 Wimbledon fans made the trip to MK Dons

57 mins: I'm afraid to see say you can really see why Wimbledon have struggled in League Two this season. They have offered very little other than hard work and graft.

Sportsmail's Matt Barlow at stadium:mk: 'MK firmly in command at the start of the second half. Sullivan’s goal under attack from Lewington, Balanta and Bowditch. Home crowd sing: “You’re getting beat by a franchise” … and the temperature has dropped alarmingly.'

51 mins: Chance! Balanta's attempted cross deflects off Mambo and nearly beats Sullivan at the near post.

47 mins: Close! Lewington's dinked free-kick nearly finds the top corner as the veteran Sullivan laboriously tips the ball over the bar.

Screamer: Gleeson celebrates his wonderstrike

Screamer: Gleeson celebrates his wonderstrike

46 mins: We're back under way…

Sportsmail's Matt Barlow at stadium:mk: 'Test for the AFC spirit now. Wonderful strike from Gleeson. Out of place with the rest of the half. Plenty in the stadium:mk were queuing up for a cuppa when it flew in to the top corner.'

HALF-TIME: Just as it looked as though Wimbledon would be heading into the break level, a rare moment of magic in an otherwise turgid game has given the advantage to Karl Robinson's side. The atmosphere inside the stadium:mk is absolutely rocking now with both sets of fans in full voice. Wimbledon will have to come out of their shell in the second half if they are to get at least a replay from this though as they have offered nothing going forward so far.

GOAL!!! MK Dons 1 (Gleeson) AFC Wimbledon 0

What a strike! Gleeson spanks one from 30 yards that rises and swerves into the top corner leaving Sullivan with absolutely no chance.

Grudge match: Captains Steven Gregory (left) and Dean Lewington shake hands before the game

Grudge match: Captains Steven Gregory (left) and Dean Lewington shake hands before the game

42 mins: Yado Mambo rises highest to clear a dangerous free-kick from Chadwick. The big centre half has been outstanding so far for the visitors.

38 mins: The game has not been the best so far, though it was always going to be a sideshow to the battle of the fans… which is still going strong.

32 mins: Route one stuff from Wimbledon so far, in keeping with their tradition. /12/02/article-2241756-1650ACE9000005DC-752_634x422.jpg” width=”634″ height=”422″ alt=”Standing firm: MK Dons fans display a banner for the Wimbledon supporters to read” class=”blkBorder” />

Standing firm: MK Dons fans display a banner for the Wimbledon supporters to read

22 mins: Luke Chadwick is really pulling the strings here for MK Dons. The former Man United man is a top player at this level.

18 mins: Close! MK Dons winger Angelo Balanta bends one just wide of Sullivan's left-hand post from 20 yards out.

17 mins: MK Dons have dominated possession and look very comfortable on the ball. Wimbledon are holding firm though.

13 mins: David Martin does well to come out of his box and thwart /12/02/article-2241756-1650A3F0000005DC-973_634x421.jpg” width=”634″ height=”421″ alt=”Protest: Wimbledon fans express their dislike of MK Dons owner Pete Winkelman” class=”blkBorder” />

Protest: Wimbledon fans express their dislike of MK Dons owner Pete Winkelman

9 mins: A chartered plane has just flown over the stadium reading, 'we are Wimbledon'.

7 mins: Sullivan saves at the near post from Otsemobor. the 'keeper is still going strong at the age of 42.

6 mins: It's been all MK Dons so far, but Wimbledon are winning the battle of the fans.

3 mins: Dean Lewington sends the game's first shot high and wide into AFC Wimbledon supporters behind the goal, who greet the effort with ironic cheers.

Sportsmail's Matt Barlow at stadium:mk writes: 'They're playing Welcome to the Jungle. Its not exactly Istanbul, but there's a lively atmosphere and a few taunts knocking about. AFC fans holding “We are Wimbledon” banners. MK fans have a banner saying: “We're keeping the Dons… Just get over it” and another saying “AFC Hypocrites”.'

1 min: We're under way… Both sets of fans are belting out songs.

Die-hard: An AFC Wimbledon fan turns up with a mask

Die-hard: An AFC Wimbledon fan turns up with a mask

12.29pm: The players are out on the pitch and the atmosphere is very, very tense. here we go…

12.15pm: Back to on-field matters and the teams are in. MK Dons will start as strong favourites and they have picked a first-choice starting XI for this one, including the selection of captain and left back Dean Lewington, who came through the ranks at Wimbledon FC. For AFC, veteran former Wimbledon FC goalkeeper Neil Sullivan has been granted clearance to play.

12.10pm: I am sure most of you are aware of the significance of this fixture but for those of you who are not, here is a brief history lesson for you… Wimbledon FC – winners of the 1988 FA Cup – were relocated to Milton Keynes in 2003, by which time AFC Wimbledon had already been formed (in 2002) in protest against the proposed move. As AFC worked their way up through the non-league pyramid, Wimbledon FC were renamed MK Dons in 2004 and have continued to ply their trade in the lowest two tiers of the Football League. AFC Wimbledon were promoted to the Football League for the first time back in May 2011 and the club are now just one division apart, but today's FA Cup tie will be the first time the two sides have met each other.

12.00pm: Good morning everyone and welcome to Sportsmail's live coverage of one of the most eagerly anticipated matches of the season so far as MK Dons and AFC Wimbledon meet for the first time.

Grudge match: The two sides meet for the first time

Grudge match: The two sides meet for the first time