Sunderland secured a welcome away win at Plough Lane as former Wimbledon striker Charlie Wyke struck a hattrick on his return to his former club.
There was one change for the Dons from the team which won away to Bristol Rovers in the Papa John’s Trophy last Tuesday, as top scorer Joe Pigott replaced the injured Ollie Palmer.
Whilst the Black Cats made four changes to their side which won against Port Vale at the Stadium of Light in midweek, with Lee Burge, Aiden McGeady, Grant Leadbitter and Wyke all coming in for Remi Matthews, Lynden Gooch, Daniel Neil and Chris Maguire.
It was the away side who hit the front early on as former Wimbledon loanee Wyke tapped home from close range following good approach play on the right hand side involving Elliot Embleton and Aiden O’Brien.
Ryan Longman was proving to be the home side’s best route to goal in the first half, with the on loan Brighton and Hove Albion forward leading several counter attacks for the Dons.
The home side registered their first meaningful effort of the game just after the 20 minute mark as Jack Rudoni took aim from range and forced a fine save down to his left from Lee Burge in the Sunderland goal.
Max Power’s influence for the visitors did not waver despite playing in an unfamiliar right back role, with the former Wigan Athletic man pinging passes and driving forward at will.
The final few minutes of the first half passed largely without incident as both sides slowly settled into the contest.
Moving forwards into the second half and it was the hosts who stepped things up a gear with both Ethan Chislett and Longman causing problems for the Sunderland backline early on as they dragged shots off target.
However after a lull of around half an hour, in a game that offered very little in the way of goal mouth action, the away side struck their second as Wyke finished well at the near post from a corner as he ghosted in unmarked.
The Dons then almost fought back straight away as Joe Pigott drove forward and struck a shot that thumped off the post in what was his first real chance of the contest.
However it was the visitors who would increase their lead as Josh Scowen found that man Wyke once again in behind, with the striker dinking home with ease to walk off with the match ball on a memorable afternoon for the Black Cats’ number nine.
In the end it was a comfortable victory for Sunderland as Lee Johnson’s side slowly moved up the league standings, whilst for Wimbledon and Glyn Hodges it’s very much a case of going back to the drawing board after yet another damaging home defeat for the Dons.
FULL TIME: AFC Wimbledon 0-3 Sunderland