MK Dons will be looking to end a challenging 2016 on a positive note tonight when they face Swindon Town at Stadium MK.
And what better way to go into the New Year than on the back of a home victory – something Neilson’s side will be looking to achieve this evening.
In order to that, they’ll need to bounce back from successive defeats to Gillingham and Charlton Athletic and return to the winning ways against a Robins side they’ve beaten in each of the last three meetings.
Kick-off is at 7.45pm.
Swindon sit one place below the Dons in the Sky Bet League One table heading into tonght’s meeting at Stadium MK.
The Robins have won just one of their last eight matches – a run which includes five defeats, including a 3-1 loss to non-league Eastleigh in the Emirates FA Cup.
They do, though, have some impressive victories to their name in 2016/17 – their 1-0 win at home to fifth-placed Bradford City and their 3-0 success over fourth-placed Rochdale certainly stand out.
However, all-but one of those triumphs have come at the County Ground, with the Wiltshire outfit having won just one away league match all season. They are also tied for second-last in terms of goals scored on their travels.
The Dons weren’t able to make it three successive home victories after losing 1-0 to Charlton Athletic on Boxing Day.
Neilson’s men made a strong start and went close to opening the scoring on a number of times in the opening half an hour.
It was the Addicks, though, who would find the breakthrough courtesy of Ademola Lookman’s fine finish – a first-half goal which proved to be the difference at Stadium MK.
Sean Murray, Michael Doughty and Luke Norris all had opportunities to equalise but the game was sealed when Gregory volleyed home with 25 minutes remaining.
Lee Gregory scored the Lions’ first goal 10 minutes in, forcing his way past Swindon defenders before finding the net from a tight angle.
Swindon conceded either side of half-time as they slipped to defeat against Millwall.
Last Dons win: 3-0, 4 Apr 2015 (The County Ground)
Dons wins at Stadium MK: 4
Dons wins: 9
Toner’s assistant referees are Daniel Cook and Dave Bushell while the fourth official is Carl Brook.
The Lancashire official, who has never before refereed the Dons, will take charge of his 22nd game of the season. He has so far produced 70 yellow cards and sent off three players.
Ben Toner will be the man in the middle tonight.
Midfielder James Brophy could also return but forward Ellis Iandolo is out.
Swindon are hopeful of having striker Jonathan Obika and defender Brandon Ormonde-Ottewill back from injury.
George C Williams replaced Bowditch against the Addicks but Daniel Powell and Chuks Aneke are also options for Neilson.
The Dons are still without the injured George Baldock (hamstring) and the suspended Darren Potter, while there are doubts over the fitness of top scorer Dean Bowditch, who limped off during the Boxing Day defeat to Charlton.
“I expect most of the players are comfortable playing in that type of way so there's a good chance that they will be a slick team."
Luke Williams: “MK Dons have struggled to bounce back immediately but there is still a long way to go and they can climb the table.
“One thing we know for sure is that it will be a tough test.”
“They are a team who like to change things up in terms of formation so we’ve been busy this week making sure we are prepared for the challenge.
Last draw: 1-1, 7 Sep 2013 (Stadium MK)
Draws at Stadium MK: 1
MK Dons PlayerHD will have live commentary of tonight's match –
for more betting options for this evening’s Sky Bet League One fixture – don't forget the Dons benefit every time you win with Sky Bet! here Click
*All odds correct at the time of writing
John Goddard: 10/1
Jermaine Hylton: 9/1
Luke Norris: 8/1
Jonathan Obika: 7/1
No goalscorer: 12/1
Ben Reeves: 17/2
Daniel Powell: 6/1
Nicky Maynard: 11/2
Kieran Agard: 4/1
Swindon win: 19/5
Dons win: 7/10
Last Swindon win: 1-0, 25 Aug 2012 (The County Ground)
Swindon wins at Stadium MK: 2
Swindon wins: 6 There will also be full coverage on the Club’s social media channels –
Supporters can also stay in touch with the Dons via mkdons.com’s matchday blog, which can be accessed by visiting the home page from 5pm.
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A full match report will be available to view on mkdons.com straight after the final whistle.
Tickets for tonight's clash with Swindon are priced from £22 adults, £17 over-65s/under-21s and £1 under-18s, while members can buy two tickets at a rate of £15 each. There are also discounted rates of £10 adults and £1 under-18s for groups of 20 or more.
., visit the Box Office/centre:mk kiosk or call 0333 200 5343hereTo purchase tickets click Tickets will also be available from the cash-only booths around Stadium MK ahead of kick-off.