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Russ: A positive change in atmosphere

MK Dons into their third week of pre-season training...

14 August 2020

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Russell Martin has noticed a positive change in the training ground atmosphere, as MK Dons prepare for the 2020/21 season.

Martin’s side are a month away from kicking off a new campaign in the third tier, after retaining their Sky Bet League One status last term.

Having to battle to avoid the drop during his first four months in charge, Martin has noticed a different vibe this summer as his squad gets ready to return to action.

“The way they’ve approached training is really pleasing,” the Dons boss said in his weekly press conference on Monday.

“There is a different feel about it. In training last season, there was lot of anxiety about our league position, but this year there is a shift in mentality. There is real belief and positivity amongst the group.

“Last week was a nice progression on the first week, so they’ve now had two weeks of real volume of work. It means they are ready to move on to the tactical stuff now.

“We have to make sure we don’t peak too early. We need to continue to take our time and make sure we’re ready in September.”

The Dons played an intra-squad friendly last Friday, which provided Martin with an opportunity to see his players in match action for the first time in five months.

“It went really well,” he commented. “We saw loads of stuff we need to work on and some really good bits too. Most importantly, though, it was about getting 45 minutes into their legs.

“It served its purpose, and they’ll be much better for it moving into this week, as we prepare to play matches against opponents.”

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