Tisdale wants Dons in the League 1 play-off mix

Paul Tisdale
Paul Tisdale

Manager Paul Tisdale sees no reason why MK Dons cannot be in the hunt for promotion to the Championship this season.

Having seen Luton Town bounce from League 2 to the second tier in consecutive seasons, Tisdale says Dons should be aiming for a play-off spot this season, or at least in the mix come Christmas time, with a view to returning to the Championship.

He said: "Why not? There's a lot of work to do but a lot of teams will be thinking exactly the same. We're ambitious, we see no reason why not.

"We'll look at the end of the year and think there are two automatic places, four play-off spots and how many teams will realistically think they have a chance. That may go all the way to May.

"At Christmas, a dozen teams will think they have a chance of the play-offs, and I think we should be in that bracket. That should be our starting point. The rest is built bit-by-bit. I'd like to see how we are after five games. Even if we don't win, it will give me the chance to see where we can adjust to win them."

Coming up from League 2 at the first time of asking, Dons play their first game of the season on Saturday against Shrewsbury at Stadium MK a week after everyone else has kicked off.

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Tisdale said after a strong pre-season, which saw them lose one of their five friendly games, Dons are in a much better position than they were when he first took over but admits only time will tell how good they are.

"We're streets ahead of where we were last year," he added. "Ultimately, it's about scoring more goals. Your team can be in disarray but you can win, or in good nick and lose. We look in good shape. We've got new players at the front of the pitch so there will be as period before our rhythm and timing with the rest of the teams will develop, we're not the finished article yet. We've got strength in depth, competition for places and an athletic squad. We look OK at the moment but time will be the judge of that."