Neal Ardley praised his team’s victory over Stevenage on Tuesday as they prepare for their FA Cup first round match against Haringey Borough this Friday.

AFC Wimbledon ran-out 4-0 winners in the Checkatrade Trophy – a victory which marks their first win since beating Oxford United in September and stops a run of seven straight defeats.

Goals from Kwesi Appiah, Anthony Wordsworth, Tyler Garratt and Alfie Egan helped the Dons advance from their group and secure a place in the last-32 of the competition.

Ardley was nothing but relieved that his players had finally ended their torrid run of form and highlighted the importance that the team take their chances in front of goal.

Ardley said: “It's put smiles on their faces. We took the game seriously. With the run that we are in we have to try and win every game because we've forgotten what it's like to win.

“Saying you are low on confidence is an excuse, we can't afford to have excuses.

“I can't, the club can't, and it's the same for the team.

“We have to wipe the excuses out and start taking our chances.”

Ardley was buoyant about his players keeping a much-needed clean sheet and hoped the win would install a more positive atmosphere around the club.

"There are still things that the boys have to learn. But it was a good clean sheet,” said Ardley.

“We've all been down and I know the fans have too, so it's a start.

“Hopefully, it will create a nicer feeling.”

The Dons now must look ahead to their FA Cup meeting with Haringey as they look to better on their third round appearance last season, where they lost to Tottenham 3-0 at Wembley.

Haringey who currently play in the Isthmian Premier League will prove tough opponents for the Dons, who will want to avoid any upset.

Ardley challenged his players to go and repeat their performance this Friday and attempt to make it two wins in a week.

“If we can go and get a win on Friday, then we see where we go from there,” said Ardley.

“We can't look back on the seven games, we just have to go for it.”