Lee Nicholls has staked his claim to be MK Dons’ first choice goalkeeper with a string of good performances, according to his manager.
The 23-year-old stopper has deputised in the absence of David Martin in recent weeks - ruled out with a back injury.
But Martin’s return to fitness on Saturday against Swindon did not see him return to the starting line-up - the first time he’d been left out of a league match since he rejoined the club in 2010.
And with Martin out of contract at the end of the season, talk of his absence from the side have gathered pace on social media, suggesting the 31-year-old may be on his way out of Stadium MK.
Boss Robbie Neilson though feels given Nicholls’ performances in the last three games show he has earned the right to keep hold of the number one spot.
“It’s important, when players come in and do well, they stay in the team,” said Neilson. “For me, it’s about performing. Lee came in and grasped his chance. It’s the same for all the players. It creates a competitiveness.
“There’s no automatic picks. Lee showed, over the course of the season, he’s hungry. “He has a presence about him, he’s a good young keeper.
“When he came in, it highlighted the work he has done over the season. He is at a level where could come in and perform right away.”
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