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Cheltenham Town video: Byron Harrison unsure of Wimbledon fans' reception

By Gloucestershire Echo  |  Posted: March 02, 2013

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CHELTENHAM Town striker Byron Harrison admits he is unsure of the reception he will be given by the travelling AFC Wimbledon fans this afternoon.

The 25-year-old left the Kingston-upon-Thames-based club on the final day of the January transfer window, signing a two-and-a-half year deal with Mark Yates' Robins.

Alan Bennett moved in the opposite direction and the defender is guaranteed a hero's welcome back to the Abbey Business Stadium, where he spent 18 months as captain.

But Harrison feels he was never truly accepted by some sections of the Dons fans during his 12 months at Kingsmeadow.

"I am not sure how the fans will be with me because there were a lot of people at Wimbledon that believed in me but a few that didn't, so it depends which ones come down to the game I suppose," said Harrison.

"I think I was underrated by some fans there and I put that down to not being given a second chance to make a good first impression and their first impression wasn't the best.

"I came back this season and I was their top scorer, but some would refer back to what had happened previously so I was living in the shadow of that.

"Some people will build it up as Byron versus Wimbledon, but it's Cheltenham versus Wimbledon and getting three points in the main thing."

Harrison scored ten goals in 28 starts and 16 substitute appearances for Wimbledon, often operating up front alone.

One of those goals came against Cheltenham earlier this season, when goals from Marlon Pack and Kaid Mohamed earned the Robins a 2-1 away win.

"I was in good form at that time and injury free," Harrison said.

"I'd like another goal in this fixture, but obviously for Cheltenham this time.

"My first aim here is to put the ball in the net and get off the mark as quickly as I can."

Harrison was dropped to the bench for last Tuesday's 1-1 draw at Fleetwood Town, with Paul Benson the lone striker in a 4-4-1-1 formation.

Yates is likely to keep faith with the same side today, if central defender Steve Elliott passes a late fitness test.

He completed a light training session yesterday having recovered from a knock in the first half against Fleetwood and the 34-year-old is hopeful of maintaining his ever-present league record this term.

If Harrison is given the nod to start, or if he joins the action from the bench as seems more likely, he said he must not try too hard to impress.

"I have played against old teams before and done really well," he said.

"Sometimes when you play against an old team, they are really up for it and give you a hard time, but it's important not to do anything differently.

"I'll give my all, as I always do, but it's important not to try too hard because it's just another game which we need three points from.

"We should have won comfortably at Fleetwood, but hopefully it's just a low before another high for the club and things at the top of the table can change very quickly."

■ Follow this afternoon's action with chat, debate, team news, live updates and reaction at: www.thisisgloucestershire.co.uk from 1.45pm.

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