MK Dons kick start their pre-season match programme this evening when they take on St James’ Gate in Dublin.
It is the third time in as many years that the Dons have made the trip to the Iveagh Grounds to face the Leinster Senior League side.
The Dons have been back in pre-season training for two weeks and spent days completing three sessions a day during a fitness camp in Dublin. Tonight’s game will be the first match-action the side has seen in over two months.
Karl Robinson is expected to hand each of his players at least 45 minutes playing time each, although Adam Chicksen, who is still in discussions with the Club regarding a new deal, is set to miss out with an ankle knock.
Academy players Harry Hickford and Giorgio Rasulo have linked up with the squad this morning and will also be involved in the match.
Speaking to mkdons.com Robinson said: “In the next three days we have three games and the result is the least important thing in my mind. It’s about getting players through the games, not getting injured and starting the get patterns of play that we can look to build on.
“We have a lot of young players out here; we still only have a small number of players because we’re still looking to do some deals to bring some players in. We’re looking forward to it but I’m not too sure the players will be happy it’s this hot for the game.
“We have a game against St James Gate this evening, each player will play 45 minutes and then we have two games – one against UCD and one behind closed-doors. The way we will work that is the players will play 30 minutes in one game and 60 minutes in the other so they get 90 minutes over the two days.
“Hopefully they will then get 70 minutes on Saturday and then the team go to Brackley the following Tuesday. I’m looking to get nearer our strongest team towards the Plymouth game which will give me three games to prepare them tactically.
“The next four or five games is about their fitness levels and then we’ll start working on different things and we’ll start to judge the results and the patterns of play that we are looking for.”
Tickets are cash only and are only available to buy on the night at St. James' Gate. They are priced as follows: Adults - €10, Children - €3.
St. James' Gate address: The Iveagh Grounds, Crumlin Road, Dublin 12