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Match Previews

Johnson Previews Milton Keynes Dons

13 February 2014

Latics boss Lee Johnson is anticipating a tough encounter when his side travel to Stadium MK on Saturday to face MK Dons.

Speaking in his pre-match press conference, the gaffer said: “I’ve personally never been to the stadium but I know it’s a big pitch. It’s cutting up heavily at the moment and it’s not totally conducive to superb football. 

“I didn’t enjoy our football against Bristol City but we had to play like we did because of the conditions. I want to give the crowd more. I want to have good energy, tempo and interplay and on the day, we didn’t have it.

“Milton Keynes are a side that suffer heavily when they get an injury to two or three players. They have three or four very good players in that team and when they are all playing, they are a top side. When they haven’t got them playing, they haven’t got as much strength in depth to compete right at the top.”

The manager added five new additions to his side in January and feels the new players have settled in well. “I’ve been pleased with the new signings,” admitted the 32-year-old. “I thought we showed a lot of team spirit to keep penning Bristol City in and that’s something I’ve got to look at.

“Gary Harkins is going to win you games. We’ve given him a bit of love and he’s played all the games. He’s got genuine quality and I think everyone’s seen that now. I thought he was the one on Saturday that could unlock the door. He’s one that we’ve got to constantly keep on top of and keep making him perform to his best.”

“It’s been good to get Rhys Turner integrated into the group. He’s had a couple of days training now and he’s looked very good. I’ve been very pleased with him for such a young lad. We had a game against the youth team for 50 minutes earlier in the week. John Paul Kissock and Rhys were involved and both did really well.”

James Wesolowski was forced off on Saturday against Bristol City but the gaffer believes he will be available for the game. He said: “It’s reasonably good news about Wesolowski. He’s back in training today and he faces a little fitness test but he feels fine and hopefully he’ll be alright for the weekend.”

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