All Change at MK Dons

Written by Connor Lawson

MK Dons fans were greeted last weekend with the announcement that Paul Tisdale would become their new manager, confirming rumours that had been circulating for weeks.

Tisdale also brought with him Matt Oakley as assistant manager, as well as Mel Gwinnett as first team coach.

So what does the news mean for MK Dons?

Well, it certainly steadies the ship after a period of uncertainty following the sacking of Dan Micciche at the end of April, and it now means the club can look ahead to next season.

Tisdale always seemed the likely candidate. He very much suits the ‘vision’ that Pete Winkelman has for the club. He is a calm, level-headed manager with heaps of experience in League Two.

It is certainly a safe choice, which has been welcomed by MK Dons fans after the risky appointments of Robbie Neilson and Dan Micciche as the last two managers, neither of those risks paid off.

Tisdale left Exeter after 12 years following their League Two play-off final defeat to Coventry, proving he is a man who likes to stay at a club for a long time.

At Exeter, perhaps his most impressive achievements are managing them to two play-off finals on a very tight budget, something he will not have at MK Dons.

Winkelman has made it no secret that the Dons will have one of if not the biggest budget in the division next season, so it will be interesting to see where Tisdale decides to spend the money.

MK Dons fans will be scrutinising his every signing, as they know it isn’t just about having the money, but how it is spent, something the last couple of seasons have made clear.

Tisdale needs to start by clearing out the deadwood in the MK Dons side. Ed Upson and Ben Tilney have already left the club, but the likes of Wieger Sietsma, Scott Wootton, Ouss Cisse, Conor McGrandles and Giorgio Rasulo all need to be released or sold.

There is some good players to work with already for Tisdale, the likes of George Williams, Alex Gilbey and Joe Walsh could all do a good job in League Two.

There simply is not one single area the new boss needs to address, he has to sign players in all positions if he wants the Dons to bounce back from their relegation at the first time of asking.

A prolific striker or two, some decent wingers, strong centre midfielders, solid centre backs and pacey full backs are what Tisdale needs.

Personally, I would like to see some good usage of the loan market. MK Dons have used it to their advantage in seasons gone by, with the likes of Patrick Bamford, Benik Afobe, Will Grigg and Lewis Baker all proving successful loan signings for the Dons in the past.

Even last season there were some good loanees in Marcus Tavernier and Josh Tymon.

I would also like to see some experienced League One/Two players signed. The main problem last season was the signings made. Very few of the players signed last season had experience of the lower leagues in the Football League, and thus found it hard to adapt.

I think most MK Dons fans would like to see Chuks Aneke leave, especially after the whole fiasco of the final home game of the season, where he attempted to fight his own fans.

However, most fans will be disappointed to see Callum Brittain leave, as it is looking likely he will do so. In truth, he has been a rising star in the MK Dons side recently, and he is far better than League Two football.

In terms of expectations for next season, it will be interesting to see where the Dons finish. Ideally, Tisdale will achieve promotion in his first season with the club. Personally, I think play-offs have to be a minimum expectation.

Tisdale certainly has a big task on his hands, but I think he is more than capable of bringing success back to Stadium:MK.