Ipswich booked their place in the FA Cup fourth round after goals either side of half-time saw them defeat a spirited 10-man AFC Wimbledon 3-1.
An own goal from Josh Davison and further strikes from Axel Tuanzebe and Jack Taylor saw the Tractor Boys past their League Two opponents.
AFC Wimbledon captain Jake Reeves made it 1-1 from the penalty spot after 17 minutes but the Championship high-flyers were good value for their win, with Dons midfielder Harry Pell sent off just before the hour mark.
Kieran McKenna’s side came into the game having stuttered in their promotion push, facing a Wimbledon side who themselves had endured an inconsistent run in League Two.
Ipswich opened the scoring after eight minutes with their first goal since Boxing Day.
Taylor’s corner found the run of team-mate Nathan Broadhead, whose first-time volley had looked to be bobbling wide – but in an attempt to clear, Wimbledon’s Alex Pearce stuck out a foot and sent the ball past his own goalkeeper to put the away side in front.
Wimbledon were undeterred by the early setback and won a penalty in the 17th minute after Taylor’s handball – Reeves, now in his third spell at Wimbledon, powered a superb penalty into the net in front of the travelling support to even the scoreline.
Despite Wimbledon’s energy and commitment, Ipswich enjoyed the better chances; Broadhead side-footed well over the bar after breaking through the Wimbledon defence, and Freddie Ladapo fired straight at Alex Bass.
Five minutes before half-time, Ipswich’s pressure told; Broadhead forced a good save from Bass, and during a scramble from the resulting corner, Tuanzebe headed the away side back in front.
Wimbledon attempted to equalise before the break when Connor Lemonheigh-Evans found himself with a yard of space in the Ipswich box, but fired straight into the side-netting.
Only minutes into the second half, Ipswich almost made it 3-1 when Broadhead teed up Cameron Humphreys, whose shot was deflected on to a post.
Just before the hour mark, Pell’s dismissal for a second yellow card could have deflated Wimbledon, but Johnnie Jackson’s side kept on creating chances.
After 70 minutes, Taylor conceded possession inside his own final third, allowing Armani Little to fire a vicious volley on goal, only to be thwarted by Christian Walton.
As Wimbledon tired, Ipswich continued to create opportunities – Tuanzebe had a goal disallowed for being offside, but in the 90th minute, Wes Burns’ shot from the right-hand side was palmed out by Bass into the path of Taylor, who fired home.
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