West Ham United have survived a big scare against 10-man AFC Wimbledon to book their place in the third round of the EFL Cup, prevailing 3-1 in Tuesday’s encounter at Kingsmeadow.
The Hammers netted three goals in the final half an hour, two of those in the closing 10 minutes, to pick up their first win of the season at the fourth attempt after Joe Pigott gave the Dons a second-minute lead.
A red card shown to Rod McDonald 18 minutes in made the task of holding on all the more difficult for the League One hosts, and so it proved as defenders Issa Diop and Angelo Ogbonna found a way through to prevent an upset, before Javier Hernandez added a late third.
Wimbledon had lost their only two previous matches against top-flight opposition, but they got off to a dream start here as Pigott powered Mitch Pinnock’s corner past Adrian with 74 seconds played.
The leveller arrived just after the hour, though, as Diop carried the ball forward and thumped it past King from 25 yards after being given too much time and space.
With 85% of possession to their name as the game entered its final 15 minutes, the pressure finally told as West Ham snatched a late winner through Ogbonna.
The centre-back stuck out a leg to convert Snodgrass’s deep corner at the back post, and two became three before the full-time whistle sounded thanks to Hernandez’s smart finish after latching on to a long ball.