Bolton boss Neil Lennon heaped praise on ‘best friend’ Karl Robinson prior to the pair meeting in the dugouts tonight at stadium:mk, but insisted it’ll be competitive between them.
The former Northern Ireland international met the Dons manager while they were taking their coaching badges and struck up an immediate friendship along with Bolton development coach Iain Brunskill.
Robinson admitted he has been really looking forward to taking on Lennon since the fixtures were revealed back in June, and Lennon was equally complimentary about his Dons counterpart.
But the Bolton boss, still seeking his first win of the season, emphasised his side won’t be holding anything back in the name of friendship.
“The friendship will be, let’s say ‘competitive’ tonight.
“I know Karl Robinson very well – he’s one of my best friends in football.
“I am really pleased to see him in the Championship – he has waited a long time for that and has been knocking on the door for a while.
“His team play very good football – attacking-wise they score a lot of goals. They are still finding their feet at this level but had a great win on the opening day.
“So we know how difficult it is going to be.
“He is a very bright coach who has a good reputation in the game and he has earned it as well.
“We did our coaching badges and pro licence together so we go back six or seven years.
“Iain Brunskill worked with Karl at Blackburn so there is a good relationship between the three of us.
“We keep regular contact and obviously we have loaned Rob Hall there again which we did last year.”