Preview: MK Dons (a)

Blackpool will be looking to bounce back from two consecutive 1-1 draws and kick start their play-off push as they travel to MK Dons.

Fresh from back-to-back 1-1 draws at Bloomfield Road, Blackpool are back on their travels as they make the trip to MK Dons with Neil Critchley’s men looking to reignite their play-off push.

Draws against AFC Wimbledon & Crewe Alexandra have seen the Seasiders fall slightly away from the pack, but with three games in hand on 6th place Portsmouth and just seven points off the play-off places, 12th-placed Blackpool are still well and truly in the mix.

In contrast, MK Dons come into the match on the back of four-match winless run, most recently being comfortably beaten 3-0 by relegation-battling Wigan Athletic. Russell Martin’s side currently sit in 16th place, 12 points clear of the relegation zone and just three points behind Blackpool.

TEAM NEWS

Blackpool are still likely to be without Gary Madine, who has been missing with a groin injury since the Seasiders’ 5-0 win over Wigan back in January. Madine was however back in training yesterday, as was Dan Gretarsson who is edging closer to a return, although tonight’s match will come too soon for the Icelandic defender. Long-term absentees Marvin Ekpiteta and Keshi Anderson both remain sidelined. 

MK Dons meanwhile have no fresh injury concerns, but will still be without David Kasamu, Ben Gladwin, Kieran Agard and Jay Bird who are all facing long spells on the sidelines.

PREDICTED LINEUPS

Blackpool (4-4-2): Maxwell; Gabriel, Ballard, Husband, Garbutt; Mitchell, Virtue, Stewart, Kaikai; Yates, Simms

MK Dons (3-4-1-2): Fisher; O’Hara, Darling, Lewington; Laird, O’Riley, Surman, Harvie; Fraser; Mason, Grigg

ONES TO WATCH

Blackpool – Demetri Mitchell

After signing on a free transfer in the summer, Demetri Mitchell has found it difficult to nail down a regular place in Blackpool’s starting eleven. However, after some sharp cameos off the bench in recent weeks, the former Man United man started Saturday’s match against Wimbledon. His energy, pace and direct running caused problems for the Wimbledon defence and is likely to start on the wing again tonight with CJ Hamilton unlikely to start two matches in four days. Let’s hope Mitchell can build on his recent performances and show what he’s all about.

MK Dons – Scott Fraser

Attacking midfielder Scott Fraser is the key to MK Dons’ attack. Given a free role in behind two strikers, the freedom he has allows him to chip in with goals as well as creating for others. With 13 goal contributions in the league this season, nine of those goals, Fraser is sure to be a tough test for Blackpool’s solid defence. Watch out for what should be an interesting battle with Blackpool holding-midfielder Kevin Stewart. 

PREVIOUS MEETINGS

Blackpool were victorious in the reverse-fixture earlier this season, with a second-half strike from Sullay Kaikai securing a vital 1-0 win for the Seasiders at Bloomfield Road.

The last meeting between MK Dons and Blackpool at Stadium MK came back in March 2018, with the two sides playing out a dull 0-0 draw. 

A win for Blackpool will be their first ever league victory away to MK Dons. 

WHERE TO WATCH ON TV

The match will be available to watch on iFollow. Match passes for the game are available, priced at £10. Kick off 7pm at Stadium MK.

PLAYED FOR BOTH

Among the likes of Gary Mackenzie and Jason Puncheon, the most popular player who played for both Blackpool and MK Dons is arguably super Scott Taylor. We spoke to him in our most recent podcast, to find out how much he enjoyed his fruitful spell in tangerine and his regrets over leaving when he did.

Don’t forget to turn on notifications on Twitter and Instagram to see our latest content first. Please help us out by commenting, liking and retweeting our posts to spread the word across the Blackpool fans. Up the mighty Pool.

You can also check out our most recent pod where we spoke to former Pool forward Stephen Dobbie to get his view on the helping the Seasiders to the Premier League, as well as his other three loan spells with the Pool!

Image: Kevin Barnes – CameraSport via Getty Images

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