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Adebayo Akinfenwa

It felt that way behind the goal, in the Nongshim Stand, where several us were in press overspill seats. The jolt of energy and pleasure that sent Wimbledon fans crashing into one another and bouncing in their seats was a scene to treasure, for locals and neutrals alike.

On the pitch, the serried Steven Gerrard was taking his first steps towards America. But Akinfenwa, that mighty journeyman who lists his career high as “scoring a hat-trick against Accrington Stanley”, stole the Hollywood role before Gerrard curled in one of his neat free-kicks to put the Premier League’s representatives back in front.

Some of Akinfenwa’s tackling evoked Crazy Gang belligerence. One pirouette was more reminiscent of Cristiano Ronaldo. Above all, though, his goal said that the South London Wimbledon (as opposed to the Milton Keynes one) still know how to give the glamour clubs a dose of what they least like. Call it direct football, if you will. Or just call it pressure. When did AFC Wimbledon really come full circle? How about when the ball dropped to Adebayo Akinfenwa, the 17st striker sometimes cast as a figure of fun, and the heirs to an unlikely FA Cup victory 27 years ago were level with Liverpool, the victims on that great Wembley day.

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