By Gary Fulcher.
Liverpool and AFC Wimbledon clash at the third round stage of the FA Cup at Kingsmeadow on Monday evening: 7.55pm kick off UK time.
AFC Wimbledon are not the same club as the Wimbledon FC that produced one of the great FA Cup upsets with their 1988 FA Cup final victory over Liverpool. Failure for the Reds to progress past their League Two opposition would be a major surprise and would heap more pressure on Brendan Rodgers.
AFC Wimbledon were founded by supporters of Wimbledon FC in 2002 as a response to the latter filing for approval to move the club to Milton Keynes (which was approved by an independent commission in May 2002). In 2003 Wimbledon FC moved to Buckinghamshire and officially registered the name ‘MK Dons’ in 2004. As a result Wimbledon FC was no longer recognised and their trophies and cultural heritage were transferred to Merton Council in 2007.
Although AFC Wimbledon are not officially connected in any status, statistics or records to the original Wimbledon FC, their founding members and supporters are the same that witnessed that shock 1988 FA Cup win by Wimbledon and as such the club is considered the spiritual successor to Wimbledon FC.
This is the first time AFC Wimbledon have reached the third round of the FA Cup, doing so by eliminating York City in the first round after a replay (1-1 at York followed by a 3-1 victory at Kingsmeadow) and knocking out current League Two leaders Wycombe 1-0 on their own turf in round two. The Wombles currently sit in 12th place, 14 points behind the leaders and five points behind the play-off positions although they do have a game in hand on all of the teams above them.
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