Many Thanks to Richard Woodward for taking the time in his busy schedule to complete our Trash Talk questions for the clash on Saturday. Richard joins a growing list of opposition fans that would love to have Scott Twine amongst their ranks.
1 – With the Transfer Window done and dusted, how has it gone for your club, some great acquisitions, or have you lost a player that you would really have liked to have kept for the run in?
Securing ‘keeper Christian Walton on a permanent deal was a real coup. He was one of a few loanees who have impressed since signing in the summer. One other was local lad Macauley Bonne who had a potential recall with QPR, but it wasn’t enacted which was also positive news.
There was some thinning out of peripheral players from the squad too, including (sadly for me at least) one Scott Fraser, who joined Charlton.
2 – Where do you see your club being in the league table at the end of the season, and indeed where do you see the MK Dons finishing?
I think we’ll fall narrowly short of the play-offs – 8th or 9th – but will be in touching distance for a while prolonging the agony! As for MK, I’ve been waiting for a possible stutter, but it hasn’t arrived yet (hoping for one on Saturday!). I think you’ll end up 4th.
3 – Who is the best and the worst team you have played this season so far?
Rotherham are just a relentless promotion machine at this level. We couldn’t get close to them at Portman Road in November.
Accrington’s approach meanwhile is particularly tedious but obviously serves them well. Wycombe too, who we’ve doubled, really didn’t impress for a potential promotion candidate. We thumped Doncaster 6-0 earlier in the season and so their league position, along with Gillingham’s, is no surprise.
4 – If you had the opportunity which current League 1 player would you like to sign for your club?
An obvious answer this, but I’d take Scott Twine to play number 10 for us. It’s a position we haven’t really got right at this level, and we’re particularly familiar with his ability to conjure something from nothing when he was at Swindon last season.
5 – Promotion and playoff places are tight this season, who do you see filling those berths?
The auto spots seem tied up already by Wigan and Rotherham. Sunderland are doing their usual annual bottle job but should be fine for the playoffs. Most teams in L1 have a long losing run about them and Oxford is the one most likely for me, but probably enough in the bank now. MK are looking good but are maybe overdue their stutter as mentioned earlier. Then there’s about four teams vying for that last playoff spot.
6 – One team always seems to come from nowhere to challenge for a playoff spot, who would be your pick?
I was hoping it would be us, and I guess it still could be. But the recent defeat to Sheffield Wednesday has really damaged our chances. I think they’ll probably be the one out of us to make a late dash and are a better bet than Wycombe and Plymouth for me.
7 – Is there any MK Dons player that you fear could be a big influence on the result of our fixture?
The aforementioned Scott Twine. Your management team will also likely be extra motivated to put one over on their former employers too!
8 – What style of play can we expect to see from your team?
Kieran McKenna has continued a lot of Paul Cook and Paul Lambert’s approach with a patient possession style. I think the difference with McKenna’s philosophy, compared to the other two, is we’re more incisive and are much better drilled to move the ball quicker when opportunities present themselves.
9 – Can you tell us a player we should look out for from your team?
Midfield general and skipper Sam Morsy will return from a particularly harsh four game suspension against MK. His aggression in the centre not only helps break down opposition attacks but affords more time and space for the likes of Lee Evans or Tom Carroll alongside him to create. Conor Chaplin is arguably our form player, scoring goals with runs from deep.
10 – Many Thanks for taking part, all we need now is your match prediction?
I would take a point, and I suspect that our respective possession-based styles may cancel each other out in a dour 0-0.