Paul Tisdale believes his MK Dons aren’t too far away from firing on all cylinders.
Tisdale’s side have picked up only six points from their opening five league matches but have won all four of their matches in cup competitions, including Tuesday’s 3-0 win over Stevenage in the Leasing.com Trophy.
While not at their fluent best, the competitive nature of the Dons’ performance has given Tisdale confidence that his team are back on the right path to turning things around.
“I haven’t been happy so far,” he said in an honest pre-match press conference ahead of Saturday’s Sky Bet League One clash with AFC Wimbledon.
“There are so many variables [to why things haven’t got right] and we have to decide, ultimately, which ones we want to discuss with the players to get us playing the way we envisage we want to be playing.
“Ultimately, it’s about the clarity and direction from me to the team and then how they execute on the pitch. We just haven’t got that quite right yet but sometimes you’ve just got through the process of finding our feet.
“We had such a poor game at Accrington but at Stevenage in the cup, we had a really competitive performance. There was only so much I could coach on the Monday but I asked for something and the players responded. That’s a building block.
“We didn’t play the football I want us to be playing and we didn’t get the fluency I’d want in our play but they gave me what I asked for on the night and that’s a good starting point. It’s one thing at a time. We’ve got to start layering and building up our performance again.
“We’re not miles away. It’s funny because while a performance can look terribly disjointed, you might only actually be a fraction away from getting it right and that’s what I believe we are in at the moment - things aren’t quite right and that leads to the next thing and it all looks a bit disjointed but once we get it moving, it will all come into place.
“Tuesday was important for that. It’s got us going again and has us physically and mentally focused. That needs to step on now in this next game.”