Karl Robinson hopes to keep hold of his loan stars in January, but knows work needs to start now.
Jordan Spence, Samir Carruthers, Dale Jennings and Patrick Bamford all played key roles in Dons’ 3-0 win over Port Vale on Saturday, but their deals at stadium:mk will expire in the first week of January.
With the four playing such key roles in the side of late, Robinson wants to sit down as soon as possible to hash out deals to keep them playing for his side.
Asked about keeping them, he said: “I don’t know, it’s not something that happens over night.
“Sometimes it’s not up to the players either. If it was up to the players, it’d be so much easier! There’s finances and parent clubs, but we need to sit down and start planning for 2014.”
The win over Port Vale came at a canter, with three goals in the opening half an hour from Stephen Gleeson, Ben Reeves and Patrick Bamford.
And although it’s Dons’ third win in a row, and the first time they’ve won back-to-back in League 1 this season, Robinson wasn’t getting to far ahead of himself.
He said: “This is a good Port Vale side, and we all knew how difficult it would be today. But a wonder-goal from Stephen Gleeson got us off to a great start, but Reeves’ quality is showing at the moment, and the all-round play for Patrick’s customary goal too.
“At half time, I’d have taken a 0-0 in the second half and they gave me that!
“We’re still without four or five players, but if we can keep winning and then get these players back, it’ll be a wonderful 2014.
“The front four were sensational and none of them were over 21 years of age.
“Jennings was unplayable. He’s someone I have a soft spot for. He’s a match winner and he gets people out of their seat. Those players are worth their weight in gold. I hope we can retain him for the rest of the season.
“We had clear the air talks, we all understood where we were. But we’re still nowhere near where we want to be, and it’s important we keep our feet on the ground. We know there’s a lot of work to be done.”
Asked about the catalyst which has helped Dons out of their recent slump, Robinson said: “Having players back fit is something I’ve been screaming for for a while. Stephen (Gleeson) is getting back to full form, Reeves is understanding his role better, and Samir (Carruthers) coming back in has given us a tremendous quality and work ethic.
“But Dale Jennings will be a huge plus for us. He’s a sensational young player.
“And I think having David Martin back in goal, Darren Potter is a new man - having certain people back in certain positions has helped us.”