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Match Previews

Preview: Southend Utd

21 October 2016

MK Dons are back in Stadium MK action this afternoon, when they host Southend United in an important Sky Bet League One clash.

Karl Robinson’s side are still searching for that elusive first home success having been denied all three points in midweek against Bristol Rovers – leading 3-1 with four minutes to go, the Dons conceded twice late on, forcing them to settle for a point.

Although a disappointing outcome, the draw was an upturn on the two previous results at home and they’ll be looking to continue that ascendancy today against the Shrimpers.

The Dons’ attack performed well in that 3-3 draw on Tuesday – it was only the second time all season the team had scored more than two goals in a league game. They’ll need that to maintain that cutting edge this afternoon, while also get back to their stubbornness in defence.

Kick-off is at 3pm.

Southend are currently level on points with the Dons, having enjoyed some positive results in recent weeks.

Having won just once in the opening seven matches, the Shrimpers have picked up three victories in their last seven fixtures, including a 2-1 win over 13th-placed Oxford United. Other impressive results this campaign include their away triumph at Sheffield United and their 1-1 draw with Bradford City last weekend.

That success at Bramall Lane is Southend’s only win on the road, however. Phil Brown’s side have only scored five times all season away from home – the second fewest among sides in Sky Bet League One – while their total of 15 goals conceded on the road is more than all-but one other team.

The Dons were denied a first home success courtesy of two late goals from Bristol Rovers striker Matty Taylor, who took home the matchball after Tuesday’s clash at Stadium MK.

It was Robinson’s men who took the lead courtesy of Dean Bowditch’s sixth strike of the season and they later doubled their lead through George B Williams’ first Dons goal – a powerful header across goal, which went in off the far post.

Two minutes after half-time, Rovers reduced the deficit but the men from MK1 soon restored their two-goal advantage with Ben Reeves, this time, the goalscorer.

Just as it looked as though the Dons were on course for their first home victory of the campaign, Taylor found the net twice in the space of two minutes to earn a share of the spoils for his team and force the men from MK1 to wait another game in their bid to get on the board at Stadium MK.





They were then made to pay for their lack of cutting edge after half-time when Wordsworth latched on Will Atkinson’s flick on and headed in at the far post to earn a draw.

McNulty went close to doubling his tally two minutes later but saw two efforts denied by the away defence, while Josh Cullen also had a chance to score for Bradford.

The Bantams broke the deadlock in the 36th minute when strike Marc McNulty raced onto a through pass before shooting past the advancing Mark Oxley in the Southend goal.

Anthony Wordsworth’s second-half goal earned Southend an impressive point at second-placed Bradford City in midweek.



Last Dons win: 3-1, 20 Feb 2010 (Stadium MK)
Dons wins at Stadium MK: 3
Dons wins: 6

Breakspear’s assistant referees are Joe Clark and Mark Griffiths while the fourth official is Nigel Lugg.

The Surrey official has shown 61 yellow cards in 12 games this campaign and made four dismissals, two of which came in one match.

Charles Breakspear will referee the Dons for the second time this season, having previously taken charge of their EFL Cup tie at Reading back in August.

Striker Nile Ranger picked up a knock against Bradford in midweek and will be monitored ahead of kick-off.

Southend have only one injury concern ahead of this afternoon's match at Stadium MK.

In terms of injuries, George Baldock (hamstring) is nearing a return to training but won’t be available while Chuks Aneke (knee) and Scott Wootton (knee) remain out.

They are, however, boosted by the return of Joe Walsh and Darren Potter, who both missed that clash with Rovers due to their respective suspensions.

The Dons will be without their captain Dean Lewington, who is suspended after collecting his fifth booking of the season in Tuesday’s draw.

“To draw (on Tuesday) would have been a blow to them I would have said, so psychologically they’ll be feeling it a little bit, as opposed to us where we’re on a high from a good result where we could have won it in the end on Tuesday night.”

Phil Brown: “MK Dons are a good side with some good players, certainly in attack with a good young manager in Karl Robinson. They have got goals in them, but they will concede goals.

“They have all their players fit and ready to have a go at us so we know how hard it’s going to be.”

Karl Robinson: “I’m expecting a difficult game. Phil Brown has a got a lot of experience in that side. They’ve got good players right the way through the team.




Last draw: 0-0, 26 Dec 2005 (Roots Hall)
Draws at Stadium MK: 0
Draws: 1




for more betting options for today's Sky Bet League One game - don't forget the Dons benefit every time you win with Sky Bet! here Click

*All odds correct at the time of writing

Marc-Antoine Fortune: 8/1
David Mooney: 8/1
Simon Cox: 13/2
Dean Bowditch: 11/2
Nicky Maynard: 5/1
Kieran Agard: 4/1
First goalscorer

Southend win: 100/30
Draw: 11/4
Dons win: 3/4
Result

Last Southend win: 20 Nov 2009 (Roots Hall)
Southend wins at Stadium MK: 0
Southend wins: 1 MK Dons PlayerHD will have live commentary of today's match, with coverage starting at 2.55pm –

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 midday.

to sign up for as little as £4.49 a month!hereclick !Snapchat and Instagram, Facebook, TwitterThere will also be full coverage on the Club’s social media channels –

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

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