AFC Wimbledon winger Chris Arthur is adamant that the players are still friends, despite the increased competition for places.

Following Tuesday night’s 1-1 draw with League Two leaders Chesterfield, first team coach Simon Bassey hailed the Dons squad as the best ever at the club.

The praise, while gratefully received, heaps pressure on the players to keep hold of a first team shirt, and there will always be some players left out in the cold.

Arthur, a summer signing from Havant & Waterlooville, said: “We’re at that point with the squad we have, that people are being left disappointed they are not in the side.

“It is tough competition right now. Most of the squad is fit, there is competition everywhere.

“But we’re all still together, we all like one another, but there is that competition. That is what gets everyone going because everyone wants to keep hold of their shirt.”

Injury has restricted Arthur’s contribution this season, but he has found a role as an impact player – a role he carried out in the 1-1 draw with Chesterfield on Tuesday night when he came off the bench in the second half to help shore up the Dons defences.

He said: It has been an up and down season, but I have taken a lot of positives out of it.

“I have been injured and it took me time to get back fit, but now I am back and we’ll just see how the rest of the season to go.”

He added: “I started the season well, then I broke my ankle, and I had to come back from that, “But I am back in League football, will have played 25-odd games by the end of the season so that is a positive for me.”