Robbie Neilson hopes Saturday’s superb Emirates FA Cup success can inspire his MK Dons side to turn around their league form, starting this weekend against AFC Wimbledon.
Neilson’s Dons overcame Sky Bet Championship opposition at the weekend, as they booked their place in the Fourth Round of the Emirates FA Cup with a 1-0 win over Queens Park Rangers at Loftus Road.
“It’s a great result for us,” Neilson said in his post-match press conference. “We hope we can use this to get our season going.
“We came into this game in poor form so hopefully we can use this result and the togetherness to carry us through the AFC Wimbledon game next week – that’s even bigger than this.”
Saturday’s winning goal came via an unlikely source in the shape of Ousseynou Cisse. The defensive midfielder took advantage of a loose Josh Scowen pass curling a left-footed shot into the far corner, past Alex Smithies.
“We’re delighted for Ouss,” Neilson said on the Malian’s match-winning goal. “We didn’t expect him to be that high up the pitch because he’s a sitting midfielder but it shows his desire.
“When he got in the box, we were all screaming for him to square it and the fans probably were too! But, he’s slotted it into the top corner – it was a fantastic finish.”
He added: “He’s a guy who has come in this season and is a real favourite in the dressing room and with the fans because he’s got a big personality. He works so hard for his team and is so committed – I’m so pleased for him.”
Here’s what else Neilson had to say in his post-match press conference...
On a strong defensive showing...
“We dealt with a lot of their play and contained the two Smiths upfront. I thought our back four were excellent and everyone to a man did exactly what we asked them to do. We knew the game would ebb back in their favour as they looked for a winner but I thought we stood firm and defended so well and the guys who came on also put their bodies on the line.”
On Ousseynou Cisse adapting to English football...
“I can see him growing into the English game. If you look at the players in midfield for both teams – I think Cisse was the outstanding player. I knew when we signed Cisse that he’d get better as the season goes on. We signed him from Ligue 2 in France and the pace and intensity of the game is totally different to what it is here. The most he’s played in a season is 26 games and he’s not far off that this season so we have to be careful with him.”
On Ike Ugbo’s debut...
“There is no doubt that Ike has real quality. He injected pace into the front line, he had great movement and his link-up play was good. I also think he got the best out of Robbie Muirhead too. Ike and Robbie were great considering their age – to come to a place like this and play as well as they did shows that they’ve got a great future.”
Robbie Neilson and MK Dons will look to continue the winning feeling on Saturday when they take on AFC Wimbledon at Stadium MK.
Tickets for the clash are priced from £22 adults, £17 over-65s and under-21s, and £7 under-18s while under-12s go FREE* with a Young Dons (Plus) membership. Supporters can upgrade their seat to East Centre for £5 or to clubRed for £10.
Postcode restrictions apply - click HERE for more information!
To book tickets click HERE, visit the Box Office at Stadium MK/centre:mk store or call 0333 200 5343. Tickets will be available to buy right up until kick-off.