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MacKenzie: Looking to build confidence

3 August 2012

MK Dons’ number five Gary MacKenzie is looking forward to the test of facing Premier League opposition Norwich City tonight (Friday) in the Club’s first home game of the 2012/13 pre-season.

Gary was part of the side that upset the Canaries at Carrow Road in last year’s League Cup, beating them 4-0 to knock the top division side out of the competition.

And the 6ft 3in Scotsman is wary that Chris Hughton’s men will be looking to mend dented pride, but is keen to repeat the feat of last year.

Talking to MK Dons Player, he said: “Of course we played Norwich last year in the Carling Cup, where we went and turned them over on their own patch so I’m sure that will be in the back of their mind and they will be looking to rectify that.

“It’ll be a good test for us as they’ve brought in a lot of good players. It’ll be interested to see how far we’ve come from last season and to see if we can still match it with the big boys.”

Eleven players who featured in the fixture last year are still with the Dons now, which highlights the work done in the off-season to keep the squad together.

However, the Club have added new faces in Jon Otsemobor and Ryan Lowe and Gary is looking to use the friendlies as a chance to build confidence playing with the newbies.

“We’re looking to not only build fitness but build confidence playing with the new boys. Of course we want to win too, as in football you want to win every game you play whether it’s a friendly or not.”

One of the summer recruits, Ryan Lowe, is a man the former-Rangers trainee remembers well from last season.

“We played against Ryan last year. He’s a tricky striker and a clever footballer and hopefully he can bring something a little different to our team and chip in with a few goals. Hopefully these new additions can be the little touches we need to get us over the line at the end of the season.”

With the Cheltenham Town clash only a week away, the end of pre-season is nigh and the Dons’ centre-back is pleased with how his summer has gone.

“I’ve had a good pre-season. We had a good couple of games in Ireland and then were unfortunate with the game at Kettering where the playing surface wasn’t great.

“We still managed to get a decent exercise out of it and get some minutes in the bank so it’s been good.

“I missed a couple of days with a bug but other than that I’ve been fit and healthy so I’m just looking forward to getting into the next couple of games against higher calibre teams and testing myself against them.”

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