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Match Previews

Preview: Charlton Athletic

8 March 2016

The Dons will be out to build on Saturday’s positive result tonight when they face Charlton Athletic, a side two places below them in the Sky Bet Championship table, at the Valley.

Karl Robinson’s side maintained their three-point gap over the bottom three with a 2-0 triumph over Queens Park Rangers this past weekend, a result which also saw them pull to within two points of Fulham in 19th.

The men from MK1 also stayed seven points clear of tonight’s opponents, the Addicks, and they’ll be eager to extend that margin further by picking up their sixth positive result in eight games this evening.

With sides around them also in action tonight, a victory could also see the Dons climbing the table.

Charlton go into tonight’s game on the back of a good win themselves – a 2-1 success over Brentford at Griffin Park.

That triumph was the Addicks’ second in seven outings having previously gone 12 matches in all competitions without claiming three points.

However, both those victories came away from home and Jose Riga’s side are still awaiting their first triumph at the Valley since November – Charlton have won three times on their own patch this league campaign, drawing seven and losing seven.

Captain Dean Lewington and substitute Ben Reeves both got on the scoresheet as the Dons picked up an important three points with a 2-0 home victory over QPR at stadiummk.

After a cagey first-half, the Dons flew out the blocks in the second period and edged in front when Lewington sent a superb left-footed finish across R’s keeper Alex Smithies and into the far corner.

Josh Murphy missed a penalty with four minutes remaining which prevent a comfortable finish but the Dons were able to extend their advantage deep into stoppage time when Ben Reeves converted from the spot, after Rob Hall was fouled.

The Bees drew level before the half-hour mark courtesy of Joann Barbet’s header but Harriott secured a much-needed success for his side after pouncing on Bees goalie David Button’s mistake.

Callum Harriott opened the scoring after just 19 seconds when he side-footed home from 12-yards after the Bees failed to properly deal with Morgan Fox’s left-wing cross.

Charlton secured their first win in six games with a 2-1 away success at Brentford.

“They’ve got two big boys that play up top, players who can bombard us. They change their game tactically quite a lot which leaves us a bit unsure as to how they’ll play this evening.”

Karl Robinson: When you go to the Valley, you know you’re always going to be in for a difficult test. They find themselves in a tough predicament, a little bit like us, so the mental side of the game is going to be important.

) mkstadium Last Dons win: 1-0, 3 Nov 2015 (
Dons wins at the Valley: 0
Dons wins: 2

The Dons have scored in each of their past four encounters with Charlton, winning two of them and drawing one.

Breakspear’s assistant referees tonight are Stuart Butler and Nicholas Cooper while the fourth official is Tim Robinson.

In 30 games this season, the Surrey official has booked 123 players but only shown three red cards. Five of those yellow cards came in the men from MK1’s home success over the Royals – Kyle McFadzean and Samir Carruthers were the two Dons players cautioned.

Charles Breakspear will referee the Dons this evening for the second time in two months, having taken charge of their 1-0 victory over Reading back in mid-January.

Johnnie Jackson, Chris Solly, Igor Vetokele, Patrick Bauer and Ahmed Kashi are all out through injury while Harry Lennon is suspended.

Goalkeeper Stephen Henderson is also touch and go with both a dead leg and an injured finger.

Charlton will monitor Alou Diarra ahead of kick-off after he left the Brentford win early with a back complaint.

On a positive note, Jay Emmanuel-Thomas is back available for selection after missing the victory over his parent club QPR due to the terms of his loan.

This evening’s game is also set to come too soon for Carl Baker, who is nearing a return from a lengthy injury lay-off, while Joe Walsh is definitely out after picking up a hamstring strain in training ahead of last weekend’s game. Matt Upson (hamstring) is also sidelined.

Jake Forster-Caskey is a doubt for tonight’s clash after limping off against QPR on Saturday with a foot injury.

"(The win over Brentford) is a game which we can take as an example for our next few games. I like the reaction from my players because for the last few games, we can say that mentally and psychologically we are still alive."

Jose Riga: “(On Saturday) we showed that we are still alive and that we have bodies ready to fight - we just need to stay consistent and move on to another huge game on Tuesday.”

) mkstadium Last draw: 1-1, 27 Sep 2011 (
Draws at the Valley: 0
Draws: 1

Last Charlton win: 2-1, 14 Feb 2012 (The Valley)
Charlton wins at the Valley: 3
Charlton wins: 5

A full match report will be available to view on straight after the final whistle.

@MKDonsFC can also follow every pass, tackle, shot and goal by following the Club’s official page - Twitter Those on

Fans can also stay in touch with the Dons via’s matchday blog, which can be accessed by visiting the home page from 5pm.

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for more betting options for tonight’s Sky Bet Championship clash - don't forget the Dons benefit every time you win with Sky Bet! here Click

*All odds correct at the time of writing

Ben Reeves: 4/1
Josh Murphy: 7/2
Dean Bowditch: 100/30
Nicky Maynard: 3/1
Alex Revell: 3/1
First Dons goalscorer

Dons win: 9/5
Draw: 23/10
Charlton win: 6/4

Tickets for tonight's game can now only be bought from the South Stand ticket office at the Valley, by cash only - tickets are are priced from £22 adults, £16 seniors/under-21s, £10 under-18s and £5 under-11s.

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