MK Dons will be targeting back-to-back league victories when they visit Peterborough United tonight.
Robbie Neilson’s men secured their first away win of the Sky Bet League One campaign last weekend with a 1-0 triumph at Plymouth Argyle and they’ll be looking to build on that result this evening in Cambridgeshire.
Three points tonight could see the men from MK1, who kept their fourth clean sheet of the campaign against Argyle, climb into the top half of the table for the first time in 2017/18.
What Neilson's side would loved to do is replicate the display from their last visit to the ABAX Stadium when they ran-out convincing 4-0 winners over the Posh – a showing which was named Performance of the Season by supporters in 2016/17.
That said, Neilson will surely accept another 1-0 success – both of the Dons’ league victories this season have come via that scoreline.
Kick-off this evening is at 7.45pm.
Peterborough will be eager to bounce back tonight after suffering their first defeat of the campaign at the weekend.
Grant McCann’s outfit were beaten 3-1 by Bradford City at the ABAX Stadium, which was also the first time this season that they’d conceded more than one goal in a match.
Still, they currently sit third in the Sky Bet League One table with four wins and a draw to their name. Also, nobody has netted more goals in their opening six matches than the Posh, who have failed to score just once in their eight matches in all competitions.
The Dons picked up a well-earned three points away at Plymouth Argyle last Saturday.
Aidan Nesbitt grabbed the goal for Neilson’s side in the ninth minute, cooly finishing at the far post from a Callum Brittain cross.
Plymouth were then reduced to 10 men before the break when Graham Carey lunged in on Gboly Ariyibi.
Despite their man advantage, the men from MK1 weren’t able to build on their lead but they were able to see out the match and the result – their first away from home in the league this season.
Peterborough were beaten for the first time this season, losing 3-1 at home to Bradford City.
Dominic Poleon fired the Bantams ahead on seven minutes before teammate Nicky Law denied Ryan Tafazolli on the line to preserve the advantage.
Romain Vincelot headed in a second for Bradford on 36 minutes and the Yorkshiremen were able to add a third in the closing stages of the first-half – Matt Kilgallon with another header just two minutes after Vincelot’s goal.
Posh captain Jack Baldwin scored a consolation for his team in a second half which saw both sides reduced to 10 men.
Robbie Neilson: “It’s a huge game for us and the fans. We know that going into it and we hope to come away with three points.
“It will be tough because they’ve had a good start to the season, even though they had a difficult result on Saturday. Hopefully we’ll have a good support there to back us like we did last year.”
Grant McCann: “We have had a lot of games against MK down the years and there is a lot of rivalry between the two clubs – the supporters certainly look forward to this game.
“I watched their win at the weekend and they thoroughly deserved to win the game. It is a good game for us and one that we are looking forward to.”
The Dons are hopeful of having Ed Upson available for selection despite the midfielder suffering a hip injury in Saturday’s win at Plymouth.
Aaron Tshibola, who sat out the trip to Devon with an illness, is back available but Peter Pawlett and Joe Walsh are sidelined, along with Chuks Aneke (hamstring) who will feature in an Under-23s match this week as he continues his recovery.
Peterborough will be without midfielder Anthony Grant, who was sent off in the 3-1 loss to Bradford City at the weekend.
Posh boss McCann has also revealed there are a ‘bumps and bruises’ in the squad – striker Jack Marriott could be one of those having limped out of the Bradford game.
Carl Boyeson will take charge of tonight’s affair at the ABAX Stadium.
Boyeson has refereed five matches this season and produced 19 yellow cards. He’s also made three dismissals, including two in one match.
The East Yorkshire official showed two red cards in his last Dons appointment – the 3-2 victory over Gillingham back in April. That afternoon, he sent off both George Williams and Bradley Dack for two bookable offences apiece while he also awarded the Gills a penalty.
Boyeson also made a sending off in his most recent Peterborough fixture – their 2-1 win over Shrewsbury Town in February. That red card, too, was for a second bookable offence.
Tonight’s assistant referees are Christopher Ward and Andrew Hendley while the fourth official is Michael George.
Dons wins: 8
Dons wins at ABAX Stadium: 4
Last Dons win: 4-0, 28 Jan 2017 (ABAX Stadium)
Draws at ABAX Stadium: 1
Last draw: 0-0, 20 Jan 2009 (ABAX Stadium)
Posh wins: 10
Posh wins at ABAX Stadium: 5
Last Posh win: 2-0, 27 Aug 2016 (Stadium MK)
Aidan Nesbitt to score first and MK Dons to win 1-0 – 60/1
*all odds correct at the time of writing
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