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24 October 2023 Venue Stadium MK Attendance

Kick off 19:45 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

Preview: Bradford City

All you need to know ahead of tonight's Sky Bet League Two fixture at Stadium MK...

24 October 2023

MK Dons face Bradford City tonight as Mike Williamson takes charge of his first game at Stadium MK.

Williamson was appointed as the Club’s Head Coach a week ago today and led the team for the first time at Accrington Stanley this past weekend.

The new boss has two further fixtures to tackle this week, both at Stadium MK, as he looks to implement his philosophy onto the team and, ultimately, turn around the Dons’ form.

His side will be looking to secure their first league win in 10 this evening and begin their ascent back up the Sky Bet League Two table.

Kick-off is at 7.45pm.

Bradford City are unbeaten in three heading into tonight’s clash, three points adrift of the Sky Bet League Two play-off places.

Under the caretaker management of player Kevin McDonald, the Bantams have gone from winning just once in six outings, to win two of their last three – including an impressive 1-0 win over Swindon Town and away triumph at AFC Wimbledon.


Their success at AFC Wimbledon was their second in their last three away matches, that after failing to win their first four games on the road to start the 2023/24 campaign.

They do remain one of the lowest scorers in the division on their travels, having only found the net seven times in their seven away fixtures. In total, they have scored 15 goals this term – five of which have come courtesy of striker Andy Cook.

MK Dons were beaten 1-0 by Accrington Stanley in Mike Williamson’s first match in charge.

Williamson’s side had early chances to get on the scoresheet but it was the home side who struck the decisive first goal on 31 minutes – Shaun Whalley finding the top corner from the edge of the area.

Mo Eisa and Max Dean both had chances after that but the Dons were unable to salvage a result.

Bradford City came from behind to earn a 1-1 draw at home to Wrexham.

After a fiercely-contested first-half, Wrexham drew first blood when Paul Mullin headed home from Ryan Barnett’s cross on 68 minutes.

Bradford, though, levelled the scores in the closing stages of the 90 – substitute Adam Wilson firing a shot into the net off the underside of the crossbar.

Mike Williamson: “I've played with Kevin (McDonald), and he's a great character. You can see from the results and their style, he's given them a new lease of life, a freedom, but he demands high intensity and structure.

“(Bradford) are a huge club, with huge expectations. They've got some very effective players for this level, and it will be tough for us but we’re at home and I hope we can put in more of a complete performance.”

Kevin McDonald: “Obviously MK Dons have got a new manager and we’ll see how they are going to play and what way we’re going to set up.

"We’ll be ready for it. We’ll be at it whoever is playing, that’s for sure."

MK Dons appear to have no fresh injury concerns following Saturday’s trip to Accrington Stanley, though Head Coach Mike Williamson might opt to rotate his line-up to both keep players fresh and to assess his playing squad.

Dean Lewington, Ash Hunter and Nathan Harness remain the Dons’ confirmed injury absentees while Ellis Harrison also missed out at the weekend.

Bradford City are without midfield duo Richie Smallwood and Jamie Walker due to suspension, which could open the door for caretaker boss Kevin McDonald to name himself in the starting XI.

Clarke Odour and former MK Dons loanee Daniel Oyegoke are two others tipped to replace the banned pair.

Jack Payne spent the 2018/19 season on loan at Bradford City, playing 47 times and scoring nine goals. Meanwhile, Bantams defender Daniel Oyegoke spent time at Stadium MK last campaign, making 18 appearances while on loan from Brentford.


Matt Corlett will take charge of this evening’s affair at Stadium MK – his maiden MK Dons appointment.

Matt Corlett.jpg

The first-year EFL official has refereed seven matches so far this campaign, producing a total of 29 yellow cards and three red cards. He has also awarded four penalties.

His assistant referees are Andy Bennett and Shaun Farrer while the fourth official is Kevin Morris.

MK Dons wins: 5
MK Dons wins at Stadium MK: 2
Last MK Dons win: 2-0, 23 Sep 2014 (Stadium MK)
Biggest MK Dons win: 4-1, 8 Feb 2005 (Valley Parade)

Draws: 1
Draws at Stadium MK: 0
Last draw: 2-2, 28 Feb 2017 (Valley Parade)

Bradford City wins: 10
Bradford City wins at Stadium MK: 5
Last Bradford City win: 2-0, 24 Apr 2018 (Valley Parade)
Biggest Bradford City win: 4-1, 7 Oct 2017 (Stadium MK)

AFC Wimbledon v Accrington Stanley
Crewe Alexandra v Stockport County
Doncaster Rovers v Salford City
Forest Green Rovers v Barrow
Grimsby Town v Colchester United
Harrogate Town v Mansfield Town
Morecambe v Tranmere Rovers
Notts County v Newport County
Swindon Town v Gillingham
Walsall v Crawley Town
Wrexham v Sutton United

Tickets are still on sale from the Box Office and online, priced from £24 adults, £18 over-65s and under-25s, £6 under-21s and £3 under-14s if bought before 4pm, while under-7s can watch from as little as £1.

To book tickets CLICK HERE, visit the Box Office at Stadium MK or call 01908 622933. Tickets will be available to buy right up until kick-off from the Box Office, though prices will increase by £2 if bought in person after 4pm.

Can't make the game? Supporters can WATCH this fixture live on iFollow MK Dons for £10 - to purchase a Video Match Pass CLICK HERE!

Live text updates will also be provided on the Match Centre as well as Twitter, while a full report will be available to read shortly after the full-time whistle. Post-match reaction and highlights will follow after.

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Match Reports

Report: MK Dons 4-1 Bradford City

24 October 2023

MK Dons beat Bradford City 4-1 at Stadium MK as Mike Williamson secured his first victory as Head Coach in style.

First-half goals from Joe Tomlinson and Jack Payne gave Williamson’s men the lead at the break despite Alex Gilliead’s well-taken strike.

Max Dean added a third with an hour on the clock before Alex Gilbey put the icing on the cake of a first Sky Bet League Two win in 10 attempts with a 90th-minute fourth.

Head Coach Williamson made three changes to his starting XI, with Jack Tucker, Conor Grant and Ethan Robson replacing Tommy Smith, MJ Williams and Mo Eisa.

Grant was the target of a through ball from Alex Gilbey, following a neat, quick passing move from MK Dons in the third minute. Unfortunately for the Irishman, the pass from his midfield teammate had a little too much on it.

They did, though, earn themselves a corner shortly after, and from the set-piece they opened the scoring.

Jack Payne, the taker, played it along the floor to an unmarked TOMLINSON, whose first-time effort from just inside the area made it through the crowd of players and past Harry Lewis. 1-0.

Tomlinson almost turned provider as the Dons went close to a quickfire second – the advanced wing-back teed up Gilbey on the edge of the box and the number 8’s right-footed drive was parried away by Lewis.

The Dons worked another great opportunity on 10 minutes, as Gilbey and Max Dean broke through on goal, after a neat flick-on from Grant. The former set up the latter but his effort was a little too close to Lewis, who saved.

Stadium MK thought they’d seen a second three minutes later when Tomlinson sent a right-footed shot towards goal, after being picked out by Dean’s cross. His effort looked to be heading for the net but, instead, crashed against the upright. Agonisingly close.

Despite their dominance, Williamson’s side weren’t able to extend their advantage and, on 16 minutes, they saw their lead go, as GILLIEAD drilled past MacGillivray from 25 yards, after the visitors had won possession inside the MK Dons half. 1-1.

Gilbey, in response, drove down the right-hand touchline and attempted a cutback for Dean, but the cross was intercepted. At the other end, Bradford’s Andy Cook headed wide from a ball delivered in from the MK Dons right.

Midway through the first half, Norman’s deep cross made its way through to Tomlinson, whose drive was diverted into the side netting by the body of Lewis. Brad Halliday then drilled one wide for Bradford, after a quick counter-attack.

Dean, who had been causing a nuisance for the Bantams defence in the opening half an hour, was the victim of two poorly-timed tackles from the visitors – the latter of which was recognised with a free-kick just past the hour.

PAYNE stepped up to take it, 30 yards from goal, and made Bradford pay by firing home an unstoppable drive – one which swerved away from the goalkeeper and into the top corner - to, deservedly, restore the Dons’ advantage. 2-1.

The Dons had a great opportunity to double their lead just four minutes later, after Tomlinson slid a ball through to Dean, who did well to hold his run and beat the offside trap. One-on-one, the striker wasn’t able to beat Lewis, though, and Gilbey couldn’t keep his shot on target on the rebound.

A superbly-timed tackle from Tucker prevented Bradford’s Tyler Smith from working a shot on goal with a minute remaining in the first half. Though, the interval was delayed by a relatively uneventful four minutes of stoppage time.

The first six minutes of the second half also had little to write home about, as the Dons rode a fast start from their opponents.

Williamson’s men then almost found a third through Dean but, somehow, Lewis was able to tip his fierce strike onto the woodwork, after Tomlinson’s excellent knockdown into his path. Payne cleared the crossbar from the loose ball.

Dean was through again on 54 minutes but, again, he was denied by the Bantams goalkeeper, who got enough on the striker’s shot to divert it onto the post. It did appear to be one of those days for MK Dons’ young striker, though that was until the hour mark when his deserved goal finally arrived.

Grant started the move with a through ball to Tomlinson down the left and he did brilliantly to drive clear of his man and then deliver a cross in for DEAN, who got in front his marker and stuck out a right leg, doing enough to direct the ball past Lewis and into the net. 3-1.

That proved to be Grant’s final involvement as he was replaced by Williams with 62 minutes on the clock, as Williamson looked to freshen up his midfield.

His side soon worked a good chance for Payne to extend the lead further but he was denied, one-on-one, by Lewis on 71 minutes. Williamson then made his second substitution, as Dean came off to a standing ovation – Eisa was the man brought on in his place.

He looked to the target of Norman’s cross, just seconds after coming on, though the right-back’s cross, instead, made its way through to Gilbey. He did well to adjust his body and get a header on goal but Lewis was able to make another save and deny him.

Robson almost provided a stunning fourth for the Dons but, after a driving run through the middle, he saw his curling 20-yard effort hit the outside of the side netting. He was withdrawn with a minute remaining in the 90 to be replaced by Dawson Devoy, who was on the pitch for just a matter of seconds when the Dons made sure of their victory.

Pouncing on a loose pass, GILBEY had a clear path to goal and, after driving into the area, he kept his composure in front of the Cowshed to slot home a fourth and leave no doubt about Williamson’s first victory as MK Dons Head Coach. 4-1.

MK Dons: MacGillivray, Norman, Tucker, O’Hora, Gilbey, Payne, Tomlinson, Grant (Williams 62), Robson (Devoy 89), Dean (Eisa 77), Harvie.

Subs: Kelly, Leko, Smith, Ilunga.

Goals: Tomlinson (4), Payne (31), Dean (60), Gilbey (90)

Bradford City: Lewis, Halliday, Ridehalgh, Taylor, Osadebe (Chapman 80), Cook (Smith 73), Gilliead, Stubbs, Pointon (Oyegoke 64), McDonald (Oduor 73), Wilson (Tulloch 64).

Subs: Doyle, Platt. Chapman.

Goal: Gilliead (17)

Booked: Taylor, McDonald, Ridehalgh, Stubbs

Referee: M Corlett.

Attendance: 5,510 (780 away)

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