LEAGUE 1 : AFC BOURNEMOUTH- MK DONS
Dean Court is a very big playing surface, even bigger than the one at Stadium MK and should ideally suit the visitors style of play, they play a very high possession game and force teams to do a lot of work. They like to play from the back and the 78m wide pitch here should be perfect for them, any of you who watched the FA Cup replay with QPR will probably appreciate what I am trying to put across. I have seen them play a couple of times this season and feel they might be the best team in League 2, despite the table saying otherwise, they are very well coached by Karl Robinson, who will surely be at a bigger club next season, if Dons do not get promotion this time round. I feel they were distracted by that cup run, losing discipline in a couple of games immediately after and ground in the promotion race. They looked to have steadied the ship with points against Huddersfield and Sheffield Wednesday, games in which they were clearly the better team, but then lost 2-1 at Charlton Athletic in a joke of a game, Dons were best, played 50 mins with ten men and both goals conceded came from penalties, any visiting supporters at the game will have taken huge encouragement from the desire, heart and commitment shown by Karl Robinson's man in that game. They build on it with a 5-0 demolition of Oldham next time out and followed up with a narrow defeat of Bury in midweek. The loss at the leaders was only their third in ten road outings, the other two came at Stevenage, where again they played 30 mins with ten men and were allsquare before the dismissal and the other in that cup game at QPR, where they matched the EPL side and deserved at least to take the game into extra time. They scored in the other nine road games, averaging 2.33 goals per game and only Charlton, who are certainly the luckiest, if not the best team in League 1, have won more away starts.
Dons are nine points clear of Carlisle in seventh, so with that post season spot looking pretty assured at present, they are almost freerolling for an automatic place, they trail Sheffield United who are currently second by seven points, but have still to host the Blades and with MK having five home fixtures in March, there is still plenty of potential to make up ground before they meet. Finaces have improved for Bournemouth and they are a club to watch for in the future, but the real improvement is likely next year and tehy remain a team in transition. They have won just once in five starts, losing three, failing to score in two of those, both of which came against teams in the drop zone. The Cherries are injury hit all over the pitch, but especially at the back, where they have huge defensive problems, they have taken Miles Addison on loan from Derby County, but lost Stephen Purches with a double leg break during the1-0 defeat at Rochdale,Steve Cook in midweek for up to three weeks and four further defensive players in captain Adam Barrett, Mathieu Baudry (both hamstring), Shaun Cooper and Nathan Byrne (ankle), with 70 starts between them this campaign, are all struggling for match fitness. 1.5 units MK Dons level ball 1.97 asian line.