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Lewie: Confidence is high

2 August 2013

Captain Dean Lewington is feeling confident ahead of the Dons’ Sky Bet League 1 opener away at Shrewsbury Town on Saturday afternoon.

Karl Robinson’s side head into this weekend’s game on the back of a 10-match unbeaten pre-season, a run which includes victories over Birmingham City, La Liga side Rayo Vallecano and a strong Tottenham Hotspur XI.

Although results count for nothing in pre-season, the confidence it has given the team will no doubt hold them in good stead heading into the match with the Shrews and Lewington is hoping it’ll help them start the campaign by picking up their first three points.

Speaking to MK Dons Player, the 29-year-old said: “It’s been a long time coming after a hard pre-season so we’re obviously looking forward to getting our season underway.

“It’s always an eventful one, Shrewsbury. Obviously last year’s game and also with Incey I think we were 3-0 up in one game and ended up drawing 3-3. We’ve not had the greatest results there but we’ll go into this one looking to the change that and we’re confident we can do that.

“(Our unbeaten pre-season run) is no fluke as we’ve been trying to get the right mentality where, whatever the game, we’ll try and see it out. It’s also important for the defenders when you’re keeping clean sheets.

“We’ve played some teams lower than us, some teams of the same level as us and others of a higher quality so hopefully it’s given us a taste of what we’ll come up against during the season.”

Graham Turner’s didn’t have the best of campaigns in 2012/13, with the Salop spending most of the year in the bottom half of the table. However, an up-turn in results at the back end of last season along with several shrewd additions this summer as provided the Shropshire with a renewed sense of confidence heading into this year and Lewington is expecting a difficult opening contest at Greenhous Meadow.

“From the reports that we’ve got on them (we expect them to play good football). At the back end of last season, once they secured their safety, they tried to play it on the ground a bit more and from what we’ve seen of them in pre-season they’re trying to pass the ball out from the back.

“Although we expect a passing game, sometimes once that whistle goes you never know what you’re going to face.

“As a player you always look to try and get that first 10 minutes under your belt and hope nothing major has gone wrong and then you look to build from there. Once the opening exchanges are over and done with it pretty much becomes a normal League game. We’ll go there and try and play the way we normally do.”

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