Poor pitch conditions are hampering keeper Fisher

Dons boss praises his goalkeeper for dealing with Stadium MK's unpredictable surface
Andrew FisherAndrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher

The worsening Stadium MK pitch was to blame for many of Dons' problems on Saturday against Northampton Town, according to Russell Martin.

With their bold and brave style employing keeper Andrew Fisher to play often as an extra defender, a few misplaced touches and passes from the man in gloves handed the Cobblers a few sights of goal during the 4-3 win. However, any mistakes by the keeper were recovered by him too, making two vital stops to prevent Northampton from taking anything from the game.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Martin said the source of their problems on Saturday was certainly no Fisher, but the pitch at Stadium MK. Balding and bobbly, Martin admitted he was even more impressed by his side's performance once he got a closer look at the pitch after the full-time whistle, and wanted to remove any question marks over Fisher's performance.

He said: "When I see Andrew Fisher making a few mistakes with the way we're asking him to play, it takes big responsibility on the best pitches, but he's doing it on pitches that aren't conducive to playing in that way. It takes a lot of courage, and he does it incredibly well.

"It's on me if they make mistakes near our own goal, never on Fisher, who made some brilliant saves to win us the game,

"We have to manage the pitch better. We've had to adapt a little bit more than we'd have liked to because it's affecting us, in terms of ball speed, the chances it's creating for the opposition.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"The difference between playing at home and away is role reversal from where it was last year. We are a better team than we were last year, but the one very different factor is what we're playing on. It's difficult and frustrating but it is what it is. We've found a way to navigate it and score goals at home at the moment.

"You don't realise until you walk on it and see how bad it is.

"It will be different next season. We played Hull at home, then had a massive downpour, the ladies team played on it on Sunday then we played Shrewsbury on the Tuesday and it never recovered.

"But it's not an excuse, we're winning games at home, but we have to accept performances won't be as good as they have been or as we want them to be sometimes."