Martin warns not to expect things at MK Dons to change over night

Russell Martin
Russell Martin

New Dons boss Russell Martin wants his side to play a different brand of football, but says it may take time to come to fruition.

Martin took his first training session as manager on Monday, taking over the side in the League One relegation zone and with just one point from a possible 27 behind them.

But he walks into the same personnel problems Paul Tisdale faced - injuries to his strikers, suspension for Kieran Agard - and cannot recruit until January when the transfer window reopens.

And with that in mind, Martin has warned not to expect wholesale changes in the early stages of his tenure, but there will be things he feels Dons can do better that he will look to address.

"I want us to play attractive football, of course, but that won't happen overnight," he said. "There are a lot of things I want to work on off the ball. I want us to be aggressive, pressing high up the pitch, hard-working, so it's up to us to put that out there on the training ground. There will be a few small tweaks this week that will help us function as a team.

"We've got some really good players, and it's my job now to find a system and style that works for them, us and the fans. I've got an idea, and I hope that will show over the next few games.

Martin says he will have an open-door policy with his players

Martin says he will have an open-door policy with his players

"The players need to enjoy the process, and if we can get that right Monday to Friday, Saturday will take care of itself. I want to do it in a way that is our way, a way I believe in and in a way our player can and should play. It's about believing in ourselves, what we want to achieve and making the players feel good about themselves.

"Our confidence has been knocked, but we need to build that up and get to where we need to be."

Having been a part of Dons' playing squad since January, Martin says he already has a lot of respect and admiration for the current crop of players in the dressing room. And he believes his existing relationships with them will help him succeed at Stadium MK.

Speaking after his first training session, Martin added: "I loved it, I got a real buzz from training – that will be the most important part, the relationship with the players. Every manager does it differently, but I want to be close with the players. I want to be warm and firm, being warm is not a weakness. The door is never closed, they'll get honesty. There's not a bad person in there."