The Dons v West Ham United U-21’s – Preview

By Steve Manning

Venue: Stadium MK (Capacity: 30,500 for football).

Competition: Papa John’s Trophy, Group Stage – Matchday: 2.

Previous PJT results

The Dons 1 Cheltenham Town 2 & Walsall 0 West Ham United (U-21) 1

As it Stands

1.    Cheltenham P 1, W 1, D 0, L 0, GF 2, GA 1, Pts 3 – Shootout wins: 0

2.    West Ham (U-21) P 1, W 1, D 0, L 0, GF 1, GA, 0 Pts 3 – Shootout wins: 0

3.    The Dons P 1, W 0, D 0, L 1, GF 1, GA, 2 Pts 0 – Shootout wins: 0

4.    Walsall P 1, W 0, D 0, L 1, GF  0, GA 1, Pts 0 – Shootout wins: 0

The Dons Top Scorer: Will Grigg – 3 goals.

The Dons Top Assist Provider: Dawson Devoy – 2 assists.

Peterborough United Review

The Dons returned to action at Stadium MK against Peterborough United in League One, as the Posh picked apart Liam Manning’s side in what for the most part looked like a training game for Grant McCann’s men.

It took the visitors on Saturday afternoon under blazing floodlights just over 2 minutes to open the scoring, former Dons loanee Jonson Clarke-Harris grabbing his eighth goal following some sloppy defending inside Jamie Cumming’s penalty area. Kwame Poku (34 minutes) grabbed Posh’s second of the game, before fellow forward Ricky-Jade Jones (55 minutes) seemingly finished off a limp Dons side who looked well beaten at 3-0 down.

Dons then frustratingly decided to stage a late comeback attempt as the game passed the 90-minute mark. Daniel Harvie and Matt Smith scoring in quick succession as Peterborough attempted to sit back and preserve their well-earned lead.

Harvie curled an emphatic effort into the net from just beyond Lukas Bergstrøm’s 6-yard box, before Smith lobbed the aforementioned keeper just a minute later. Those efforts proved to be in vain as the Dons fell to a deserved defeat, and 20th place in League One.

After this Pizza Trophy distraction against West Ham this evening, Dons will face a trip to Shrewsbury Town, and a home game against Bristol Rovers.

How could Dons line-up?

Expect a fully rotated side to be put out against the Hammers, as Manning looks to give game time to fringe players and the youth players as well.

We might see a return to 4-2-3-1, after the drab display on Saturday afternoon, but we shall see.

Possible Starting XI

David Martin

Jack Tucker, Warren O’Hora, Zak Jules.

Henry Lawrence, Bradley Johnson, Dawson Devoy, Daniel Harvie.

Matt Smith, Matt Dennis, Conor Grant.

One to Watch?

22. Henry Lawrence – The Chelsea loanee has found himself behind Daniel Oyegoke in recent games, but he has improved significantly in performances since his disastrous debut at Cambridge in July. His ability to read the game, as well as vision and ability on the ball, marks him out as a threat to this young Hammers side no doubt about that.

Score Prediction

The Dons 1 West Ham Utd (U21) 0

A tight game and a tight 1-0 score line tonight for this Dons side, to stand any chance of progressing a result is a must if they want to head to the Poundland Bescot Stadium in the last day mix to qualify for the second round.

Goal Scorer? Can’t see who might score to be fair here, I will take a shot in the dark and say Matt Smith.

Match Odds supplied by Oddschecker

Dons win: 3/4 Draw: 11/4 Hammers win: 3/1

Dons to win 1-0: 17/2

Dons to win to Nil: 13/5

Memberships Available

The MKDSA are now taking membership subscriptions, and renewals for the 2022/23 season. You can buy yours today online by visiting and clicking on our membership link. 

Alternatively, please visit us at the new MK Dons Supporters Association Shop, situated by Lewington’s, above gate 5 on any Saturday home match day.

The memberships are priced as follows:

•     Life Members: £25.00 (one-off payment)

•     Family (2 Adults, 2 Children): £8.00

•     Adults: £3.00

•     Children: £1.50

Your membership enters you automatically into our monthly cash prize draw, and also goes towards helping us to represent you the fans with a voice to the club.

Join us today, and stand with us #TOGETHERasONE

If you are going to Stadium MK tonight – enjoy it, and as always, I wish you all safe travels.

I’ll be back with the Shrewsbury Town preview this weekend, with the numbers and my thoughts ahead of the game.

Until Next Time, SM.

Previous Story


Next Story