MK Dons vs AFC Wimbledon preview: League One clash live on Sky Sports Football
Watch live on Sky Sports Football from 11.30am on Saturday; kick-off is at midday
Last Updated: 07/09/19 11:25am
MK Dons face AFC Wimbledon in Sky Bet League One on Saturday. Coverage gets underway live on Sky Sports Football from 11.30am, while kick-off is at midday.
MK Dons boss Paul Tisdale could hand winger Brennan Dickenson a first league start against rivals AFC Wimbledon. Dickenson, a summer signing from Colchester, was one of eight changes for the 3-0 midweek Leasing.com Trophy win over Stevenage and is expected to be involved again.
Striker Sam Nombe is also in contention after the 20-year-old impressed with two goals on Tuesday night. Summer signing Joe Mason (hamstring), defender Jordan Moore-Taylor (knee) and midfielder Ben Reeves, who picked up a leg injury after accidentally kicking himself during training, all continue their recovery.
AFC Wimbledon could hand debuts to all three of their new signings. Finnish striker Marcus Forss signed on a season-long loan from Brentford, while defender Ryan Delaney joined from Rochdale on loan until January.
England Under-19s midfielder Max Sanders completed a loan switch from Premier League Brighton to return to the club after his previous short spell in the academy as a youngster. Midfielder Anthony Wordsworth has resumed full training following an Achilles tendon injury and a shoulder problem, while Dylan Connolly has joined Bradford on loan.
MK Dons currently sit 15th in the League One standings after a start that has seen them win twice and lost three times. Their recent cup victories - a 3-0 victory over Stevenage in the Leasing.com Trophy and a 4-1 away thumping of Southend in the Carabao Cup - mask the fact they've lost their two previous league fixtures, against Accrington and Peterborough, scoring just one goal in the process.
AFC Wimbledon avoided relegation by the skin of their teeth last term and the opening month of the season has suggested they could face a similar fate this season. Wally Downes' men sit 21st ahead of kick-off, without a win to their name and having scored just five goals.
Paul Tisdale: "It's not another game. We have to prepare in the same way and it's a football field, 11 vs 11, but it's not another game because the people on the periphery and all the things that go on around the game of football make it different. Our job is to make it as ordinary as possible.
"Let's be honest about it, we know the dynamic of this game. There is the small matter of trying to beat the opposition and there's only three points at stake. That's the reality of it. We know it's a different game, but we are going to try just as hard as we do in every other game."
Wally Downes: "The feelings are like a derby: Liverpool vs Everton, Man Utd vs Man City. The feelings do run high, the form book goes out the window and it's all about the result on the day and the bragging rights afterwards.
"They weren't even a team when I was playing so I've got the burden of the feeling of the fans on my shoulders and the team have, but that's a great thing to carry because they built the club. It's just like playing a derby and three more points."
Talking point - Sworn enemies meet again
For just the ninth time in history, sworn enemies AFC Wimbledon and MK Dons meet at Stadium MK this Saturday and, as ever, there's plenty of emotion surrounding the fixture. There is no love lost in a rivalry still in its formative years.
MK vs AFC: What the grudge match means
Fans from MK Dons and AFC Wimbledon tell Sky Sports what the rivalry means to supporters, ahead of their clash on Saturday.
For AFC, the bragging rights have just twice fallen in their favour: Triumphing 3-2 in a Johnstone's Paint Trophy meeting in October 2014, as well as a 2-0 League One win in March 2017. MK boast a better record so far this season, but will the loan signings of Ryan Delaney, Marcus Forss and Max Sanders earlier this week boost their opponents' fortunes this weekend?
The last two meetings between MK Dons and AFC Wimbledon in all competitions have finished level - a 0-0 draw at Stadium MK in January 2018 and a 2-2 draw last month in a League Cup match at the Cherry Reds Records Stadium - a match which saw MK Dons progress on penalties.
AFC Wimbledon have managed just one victory in five previous visits to MK Dons in all competitions (P5 W1 D1 L3), a 3-2 victory back in October 2014 in a Football League Trophy encounter.
MK Dons have lost three of their last four league games (W1), as many as they had done in their previous 10.
Wimbledon have only won one of their last 12 League One outings (D7 L4), with a current winless run of seven games (D3 L4).
Wimbledon have conceded five goals from corners in League One this season; two more than any other side in the division.
Now this should be a tasty affair! MK Dons are back in League One and making a decent fist of it under Paul Tisdale, having been relegated a couple of seasons ago in fairly dismal fashion.
AFC Wimbledon, as I've said before, enjoyed a miraculous survival last season and are probably set for another season of struggle. These two have already met in the Carabao Cup last month, where MK edged it on penalties. I think they will win this one too.
David Prutton predicts: 2-1 (15/2 with Sky Bet)