Dan Micciche is under no illusions - he has a five month mission to keep MK Dons in League 1.
Despite his lack of first team experience and no playing career of which to speak, the 38-year-old has been dropped into the deep end to rescue a club that hasn’t fully recovered from a disastrous season in the Championship in 2015/16 which saw them return to League 1 with their tail between their legs.
But Micciche is a man with a plan. He has had a couple of days training with his new players, and though his coaching experience hasn’t really seen him take on anyone over 16, he doesn’t feel chairman Pete Winkelman has gambled with the club’s future by hiring him.
“No, because I’ve got Keith (Millen) and Dean (Lewington) with me,” he explained. “The team was essential.
“We have fantastic experience in the backroom staff. But I’m not naive, I knew I needed experience alongside me.
“I’ve followed this league for many years and I think I have what it takes to be successful here.
“We have a really good crop of players who are underperforming for whatever reason. Robbie did really well with his recruitment, and I wouldn’t have taken it on if I thought it was an impossible task - I’ve got my own career to think about as well.
“I’m optimistic and I think we can bounce back straight away. I think we can climb the league very quickly.”
Though his goals are long term, Micciche knows he has two mission objectives, and one is significantly more important than the other in the immediate term.
He said: “In the short term, we have to get out of the relegation zone. We shouldn’t be there, we don’t want to be there, we don’t belong there. However, if we get on a run, we’ll take it from there. we know it’s been done but we can’t get too far ahead of ourselves.
“The motto here is ‘Premier League in everything we do’ but we’d be foolish to start talking about that now. But we have to think about five months and five years.
“The five months is this situation, getting ourselves as high up the table as possible, but in five years, the plan is to be in the Premier League. We know it can be done.
“There’s no reason why we can’t do it.”