Dons must manage great expectations with reality - Lewington

Dean Lewington in action against Everton. Pic: Jane Russell
Dean Lewington in action against Everton. Pic: Jane Russell

There will be no guarantees in League 1 next season, and Dean Lewington knows more than most the difficulties Dons will face .

Lewington is about to embark on his tenth season of football in the third tier, but knows there is a bigger level of expectation on MK Dons than there has been before, courtesy of their cameo in the Championship last year.

But bouncing straight back up again will be easier said than done, and the skipper knows his side cannot afford to get caught up in the pressure of expectations.

“People will look at us like we’ll bounce straight back up again, and of course we want to do that,” he said.

“We had a taste of the Championship last year and it’s fantastic. We all loved being there, but we have to remember how hard it was for us to get out of League 1 in the first place. We can’t just turn up and get out - it doesn’t work like that.

“Last year, we knew all the lines that were coming out of the club, the budget and so on. We weren’t making excuses but we had to explain what was going on.

“This year, it’s different. We’re still not at the top of the spending leagues, so it’ll be tough.”

But before worrying about others in the league, the captain knows Dons have of lot of thing that need to be sorted in-house.

He added: “We know as a group we have to change certain things we didn’t get right last year. We didn’t come from behind - if we conceded, that was it.

“We didn’t win enough away from home, we didn’t score enough goals, we didn’t come back into games, we didn’t take hte lead enough.

“There are a lot of mental blocks in the way that we have to knock down. And we have to hit the ground running to eliminate those things.”