Early season schedule is 'a bit too much' for players

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Dons boss Paul Tisdale says he has sympathy with the EFL when it comes to planning a fixture list, but believes too much is being asked of his players in the first few weeks.

Dons will play nine games in the opening five weeks of the season, playing four midweek games in succession.

Tisdale's side lost for the first time on Saturday, going down 3-2 to Wycombe Wanderers thanks to a last minute goal from David Wheeler, but must immediately bounce back against leaders Lincoln on Tuesday night at Stadium MK.

The manager said after a longer pre-season break than anticipated, with their opening game of the season against Bury suspended, Dons are approaching peak fitness, but must be cautious with the hectic schedule ahead.

"We're at the point in the season now where we have our energy, but we're finding out about the league, finding our feet," he explained. "We'll learn quickly, I'll learn quickly and the players will too.

"It's so complicated to put a fixture list together. In isolation, you can say you wouldn't do it like that but it's a business and you have to play X amount of games, and we're trying to make a living but it does put a strain on the players.

Alex Gilbey and Rhys Healey have been delayed in their returns after injury

Alex Gilbey and Rhys Healey have been delayed in their returns after injury

"We've haven't quite got into the season where players are in the flow of being tired but robust and strong. Players, in August and September, are still fragile if they're playing two 90 minutes every week. In terms of player welfare, maybe it's a bit too much, but from the EFL's point of view, there are far bigger issues."