Thornton impressed by Nicholls’ spot kick abilities

Lee Nicholls makes a penalty save at AFC Wimbledon
Lee Nicholls makes a penalty save at AFC Wimbledon

Lee Nicholls has already earned the faith of new coach Dean Thornton after the keeper saved one penalty and watched another onto the bar in consecutive games.

Nicholls has made five stops from the spot this season, and Thornton is classing Freddie Ladapo’s penalty, which hit the bar, as a save too.

“I class it as two saves because it didn’t go in - we’re two out of two!” he said.

Explaining the process of the penalty research, Thornton continued: “Every week, we go through the opposition, the analysts help us a lot on that side.

“We go through three or four opposing players who could take them.

“At Bolton, I’d like to take credit for it! We looked at the style of run-up. But Lee is a great keeper, he backs himself, and even in the 90th minute, I believed he would save it. I knew he’d save it on Saturday too.

“He works hard on it, but they are the small details you need.

“I hope we don’t give away any more penalties though.”