RIVALS MK Dons and Wimbledon cross swords on Saturday, live in front of the Sky Sports cameras. Football League fan Matthew Kirby (@M_Kirby95) shares his views.
MK Dons v Wimbledon | Saturday 7th September 2019, 12:00 | Sky Sports
It may be the international break, but this League One clash could be quite spicy as fierce rivals MK Dons and AFC Wimbledon clash for the second time this season.
The two teams met in a hotly-contested League Cup tie last month and after a 2-2 draw in 90 minutes, it went to penalties. Paul Tisdale saw his MK Dons side triumph 4-2 and progress.
Will we see similar at Stadium:MK at lunchtime on Saturday?
Honeymoon is over
Wally Downes came into a Wimbledon when they were in a desperate position, but managed to turn it around with just two defeats in their last 15 games. It was like pulling a rabbit out of the hat that he kept them in this division.
However, it’s been a poor start to this new season. Four defeats from six league game hasn’t been the start anyone would have wanted or anticipated.
The Wombles did well to hold off a Wycombe side flying at the weekend, but they did ride their luck when former player Adebayo Akinfenwa had a goal ruled out for offside. It was a game that the Chairboys created the better chances, and saw Kwesi Appiah make a goal-line clearance to deny the visitors the points.
In five of their six league matches, Wimbledon have been outshot by their opponents. From 17 shots in their away matches, only five have hit the target, so Appiah and Joe Pigott are feeding on scraps, which must be a concern to all involved.
MK Dons have six points on the board and they’ve all been picked up on home turf, after a 1-0 win over Shrewsbury and 2-1 win over high-flying Lincoln.
Those wins were quite contrasting. A last-minute winner to tame the Shrews, then a crazy opening 22 minutes that saw all three goals scored to down the Imps.
With those victories, there is an interesting winning margin angle – MK Dons to win by exactly one goal at 3/1 (bet365) – given the visitors are always competitive and tend to stick in games until late on, as shown in their two 2-1 defeats against sides expected to do well.
Tisdale has been lining up with wing-backs and the width they offer can help create the pockets of space for nimble attackers like Kieren Agard and Rhys Healey. The latter started in the defeat at Accrington where he averaged 2.3 shots on-target, so he isn’t frightened to pull the trigger.
On those shots on-target stats, four of the top five players on the database are MK Dons players, with Adam Roscrow’s 16-minute cameo breaking them up. With that in mind, then you’d have to expect a strong home showing, so the 4/5 quotes look about fair.
Early or late goals
These two sides have their own individual quirks when it comes to the timing’s of goals. First half goals have been the trend in the MK Dons’ games with 10 of the 16 goals (at both ends) coming before half-time.
Similar can be said about AFC, who have scored in the first half of all three away games this season, yet they’ve always gone on to lose the game highlighting lapses in concentration late in the game. At Ipswich, they conceded twice in the final 10 minutes to lose 2-1, and in their last away game, Sunderland sealed victory against them with a 79th minute strike.
So with late drama in Wimbledon games, a late goal could be on the cards. That’s something that has happened with the MK Dons too. They beat Shrewsbury with a 90th minute goal, then a week later fell to defeat to a late Wycombe goal, so this could get open towards the end leading to chances and potential goals.
And, it was exactly that what happened when they met in their League Cup tie. Luke O’Neill scored in the last minute to send the game to penalties, so this late goal angle is one that I’m very keen to follow. We can back a Goal after 74:59 at 5/6 (bet365).