Darren Potter has endured a difficult off season rehabilitating an Achilles injury but the midfielder hopes the decision to resolve the problem will pay dividends.
While still following a rehabilitation programme, Potter is nearing full fitness and the Republic of Ireland international is confident of being ready for kick-off on August 9th when the Dons face Gillingham in their Sky Bet league 1 opener.
Speaking to mkdons.com, Potter said: “This summer has been difficult, to be fair. It’s not gone the way I would have wanted it do, for sure, as I spent a fair part of it in here doing my rehab as well as at home. That’s the first time that’s ever happened to me.
“Part of the reason to have (the injection) was to nip it in the bud there and then. I could have possibly played on with it for the rest of last season but I just don’t know where that would have led. To nip it in the bud straight away meant I could concentrate on being 100 percent ready for this season.
“I’m probably 80 percent back now so I’m almost there. I’m just excited about being back involved in the games because up until Ireland it was five months since I last played, which was a really frustrating period for myself
“The games are kicking in now we’re back in England and it’s only three weeks until the season. Playing football is what we want to do and I’m no different.”
Potter is expected to be involved this evening when the Dons face Dagenham & Redbridge in their first friendly against Football League opposition and the former Liverpool trainee hopes to use the test as another building block ahead of the new campaign.
“Pre-season games are always stepping blocks onto something, hopefully, bigger and better. Without being disrespectful to Dagenham that’s hopefully the same thing. That doesn’t mean we’re going to go there and turn them over, it’s pre-season and everyone’s still rusty. I don’t think anybody expect to be 100 percent at this stage.
“It’s another outing and another chance to get minutes under our belts and fine tune our games. We’ll also be looking to get a little continuity coming towards the start of the season. People getting used to playing alongside each other and then integrating that into different units and then the team as a whole.”
Tickets for tonight’s clash against Dagenham & Redbridge are only available to buy on the night at the London Borough of Barking & Dagenham Stadium. Tickets are priced at £12 for adults, £8 for concessions, £6 for 10-16 year-olds and £2 for under-10s.