I think I must have said everything there is to say about tomorrow’s opponents, and nothing would give me greater pleasure to see them crash and burn, so I wont bother starting again on them. Let’s just say that we have been lumbered with a plastic football team, existing in a plastic town that was artificially created in the sixties, ruining some three small towns and seven villages in the process, all of which had their own heritage. One of them, Bletchley, contains Bletchley Park, the one place that probably had more to do with the winning of World War Two than just about any other single spot and another, Wolverton, which was, until 2006, the home to what was reckoned to be the oldest covered football stand in the world. Milton Keynes, being such a hotbed of football, let it be demolished for a rehousing redevelopment. Still, they put up as replica to commemorate it, so never mind. A replica stand in a plastic town, with a plastic football team. It all seems to fit, doesn’t it?
Dean Smith will have some decisions to make. Will Grigg is away on International duty, so there will be a choice of either reverting to 4 3 3, or staying with the 4 4 2 and bringing in Brandy or Williams to play up front. Taundry also returned to the fold in the week, so he is available to play, but the so far this season impressive Adam Chambers is only rated 50/50 and his brother James is out.
Adam Chambers’ absence, should that be the case, would make a 4 4 2 more likely.
Ginger haired hate figure, Captain Dean Lewington, will come straight back into the Franchise team. Lewington has completed a three-match ban for his red card in the 1-0 defeat at Swindon and will return at left-back. However, fellow defender Gary MacKenzie, an ever-present so far this season, will need replacing in the side following his call-up to the Scotland squad.
With Lewington back in the fold, Antony Kay, Adam Chicksen and midfielder Shaun Williams are likely to make up the Dons’ backline.
The only injury doubt for Manager Karl Robinson is midfielder Jimmy Bullard (there’s a shock!), who was forced off with a dead leg 56 minutes into his full debut against Northampton in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy defeat in midweek.
The start to the season doesn’t get any easier, with Oldham still the only non fancied club that we have played so far, and this game looks as difficult as some of the others we have played. The Franchise lie in seventh position, with seven points from their 4 games so far. Mind you, if we hadn’t thrown away that lead against Brentford, we’d be level on points! Their League results haven’t been too good so far, so lets hope that continues tomorrow.
I don’t usually mention in the preview, but tomorrow’s special guests are the family of the late, lamented, Matt Gadsby, one of the stars of that special day in Cardiff. There will be a bucket collection in aid of CRY (Cardiac Risk in the Young) and our thoughts will be with his family.