After a delay in getting their season started, MK Dons kicked off their League One campaign with a late 1-0 win over Shrewsbury Town on Saturday. While Rhys Healey’s late winner was a moment to savour, attention must quickly turn to the first round of the Carabao Cup – not only because it provides a chance for a cup run, but because the opponents are AFC Wimbledon.
Paul Tisdale Should Test Other Members of MK Dons Squad
Two of the Dons’ summer signings started the win against Shrewsbury. Jordan Bowery partnered Kieran Agard up front while Hiram Boateng was deployed alongside Jordan Houghton and Conor McGrandles in midfield. As well, Healey and Ben Reeves made their respective second debuts for the club when they came on as substitutes late in the game.
There are, though, a further four signings yet to appear. One, Laurie Walker, is spending the season out on loan so is ruled out, while Brennan Dickenson and Joe Mason are still reaching match fitness.
This leaves just defender Regan Poole to come in, but plenty of youngsters will be looking to make their way in as well. Dylan Asonganyi starred at this stage of the competition last season with a brace against Charlton Athletic and there could be places on the bench for the likes of Charlie Pattison and Matthew Sorinola.
Whether, though, Tisdale would want to risk playing youth in the likely hostile atmosphere will have to wait to be seen.
Meetings between these two clubs have come regularly in the last few years, with league fixtures adding to the four cup draws that have pitted them together. This is the second time they will face off in the League Cup, with MK Dons running out 3-1 winners in a first-round tie in 2014.
In terms of an overall record, MK Dons hold the advantage with four wins, one draw and two losses – one in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and one in the league.
This will be just the second match of the season for the MK Dons squad, so going into a match of this magnitude so early will be difficult. However, AFC Wimbledon haven’t started the season well and will be downhearted by their loss against Fleetwood Town at the weekend.
This should be a tight game but the visitors will prevail, just.
Prediction: AFC Wimbledon 1-1 MK Dons (AET, MK Dons to win on penalties)