It’s us or U’s as Dons hit the road

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AFTER their six-goal thrashing of non-League Nantwich Town last Saturday, it’s back to the bread and butter of League 1 action for Dons this weekend as they face a tough test of their promotion credentials at Colchester United.

Karl Robinson’s men visit the Weston Homes Community Stadium with a three-match unbeaten record to defend, but they take on a Colchester side not used to losing on their own patch.

The U’s have only lost once at home in League 1 this season – to table toppers Charlton Athletic back in August – and also go into the game in fine form having won 4-1 at Crewe in their FA Cup first round tie, while Dons were taking care of business against Nantwich.

That earned the Essex side a second round home tie against Swindon, while Dons visit Barnet on December 3. But both clubs have two league fixtures to fulfil before then, with Dons looking to close the gap on the automatic promotion places and Colchester eyeing up the play-off places.

John Ward’s men go into the game sat 11th in League 1 but just five points off the top six. It’s only their away form that has let them down this season – something that Dons can relate to having been beaten three times on the road themselves.

However, Robinson’s men are no strangers to winning on their travels – indeed they enjoyed a 3-1 success at Colchester in March last season when Sam Baldock netted a second half hat-trick to cancel out Steven Gillespie’s opener. The two sides had drawn 1-1 in Milton Keynes in October when Angelo Balanta equalised for Dons after Magnus Okuonghae had given the visitors the lead.

Another away victory could lift Dons up to third place if Sheffield Wednesday lose at Tranmere. But it remains the top two places that Robinson has his eyes on after his side come out of the mid-season blip that saw them win just once in nine.

Charlton and Huddersfield are by no means out of sight at the top, but if Dons do have ambitions of catching them, then winning at the likes of Colchester is a must.