Dons need to make history to survive, but Robbo remains confident

Karl Robinson on the bench
Karl Robinson on the bench

If Dons are to survive the drop, they will need one of the biggest points totals in Championship history to do so.

Dons will be relegated this Saturday if they fail to beat Brentford at stadium:mk, but need one of five teams - Blackburn, Nottingham Forest, Fulham, Bristol City and Rotherham - to lose all three of their remaining games, while picking up maximum points in their remaining three to avoid an immediate return to League 1.

It will take them to 48 points, the highest number of points required since Peterborough were relegated in 2013 with 51.

“It’s an amazing number to achieve,” said Dons boss Karl Robinson. “About two months ago, we all said 45 points would probably mean we were safe.

“We have to do our best and reflect on our tally at the end. If we’re in the 40s, we can say we’re close. If we’re still in the 30s, we’re nowhere near good enough.

“But we have to get ourselves as close as we can. If we go down with the highest we can, there is a sense of pride in that.

“If we do go down, we’ll be the last team to be relegated. We were tipped to be the first. If we can get a win, I’m sure one of the others will lose and it will take us to the final week of the season. You never know, we could take it to the last day. But we have to win.”

Even though the odds are stacked heavily against them, Robinson is still believes his side can pull off the remarkable given the turnaround in performances at Preston and Sheffield Wednesday in the last week.

He said: “I still think we can get out of this, strangely enough. We have to take care of ourselves. I set the points target of 45 points at the beginning of the season, that has been the general benchmark. That has been enough in previous years.

“You just never know. It’s an amazing industry. We want to show people we can compete at this level. This has been the most amazing 12 months of my life, and I want to finish it positively.

“There have been elements of it which have been hard, not winning as many games as we’re used to. The respect you have for losing makes winning all the sweeter.

“We’ll go into the games with tremendous belief in us as people, but there has to be a desire.

“I still want to hit the points target we set ourselves. To get that, given where we are, would be an amazing achievement. I’m trying to keep everyone as positive as possible.

“We’ve looked like us again in recent games. We’ve moved the ball with ease and a swagger again. I don’t think many teams would have been able to cope with us like that. Moving away from our style doesn’t suit us. We’re so pleasing on the eye, and we create chances and get into good areas.

“We need to score goals, obviously, but we’ve struggled with that all season.”