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Match Preview: MK Dons v Morecambe

22 April 2022

The Shrimps travel to Stadium MK on Saturday 23 April as they take on Milton Keynes Dons.

Morecambe are currently three points clear of the relegation zone and will be hoping to put more daylight between them and the League One bottom four on Saturday. In their last outing at home against Portsmouth, the visitors took the lead just minutes before the half-time whistle. The ball fell to Sean Raggett who hooked the ball into the top right, hitting the post before finding the back of the net. Pompey were looking to go home with all three points, but an added time close range goal from substitute Jonah Ayunga secured a point for the Shrimps. 

Morecambe have faced the Dons just five times since September 2007. Of those games, they have won one, drawn one and lost three.

The Opposition

MK Dons are currently sat in third place in the league table and will be pushing for automatic promotion when they meet with the Shrimps this weekend. It was looking to be a goalless draw for the Dons on Tuesday night, playing away to Oxford, but Billy Bodin struck the net just four minutes before the final whistle, which proved enough for the Dons to walk away empty handed.

Born in Norwich, manager Liam Manning started playing football for hometown club Norwich City, before moving to Ipswich Town three years later. After spending time as a professional with the Tractor Boys, Manning dropped into non-league, playing for Bishop’s Stortford, Long Melford and Leiston, before a brief spell at Icelandic club Selfoss.

The 36-year-old retired from playing in 2010 to focus on coaching. He began as a coach for Ipswich Town Academy and later joined Premier League side West Ham as head coach for their U23s squad. The 36-year-old spent time coaching at New York City FC in the MLS before being appointed manager of Belgian side Lommel. Arriving at Stadium MK in August 2021, Manning won the League One Manger of the Month title for September and January respectively.

Key Players

Troy Parrott joined MK Dons on loan from Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur for the 2021/22 season. He began his youth career at Irish club Belvedere and moved from Dublin to sign for Spurs’ Academy when he was 15 years old. Parrott has previously been on loan at Millwall and Ipswich Town respectively and currently has 12 caps for the Republic of Ireland.

Conor Coventry began his playing career at West Ham United and made his debut in 2018, coming on as a substitute in an 8-0 victory over Macclesfield in the EFL Cup. The 22-year-old is just shy of 40 appearances for the Republic of Ireland, having caps for them at U17 to U21 level. Coventry enjoyed loan spells at Lincoln City and Peterborough United before joining MK Dons earlier this year in the January transfer window and is on loan until the end of the season.

Defender Harry Darling arrived at Stadium MK in January 2021 and scored his first league goal for the club in November last year when the Dons visited the Mazuma Stadium. He came through the ranks at hometown club Cambridge United from the age of 12, signing his first professional contract in 2016. Darling spent time on loan at semi-professional clubs before joining the Dons in League One. 

Pre-Match Thoughts

Ahead of Saturday's clash, manager Derek Adams says the fact MK Dons are chasing promotion will add an extra dimension to the game.

He explained: "We've got two tough games left now against MK Dons and Sunderland at home.

"Both these teams are playing for promotion, so that adds something to the game on both sides.

"We're looking to stay in the division, they're looking to get out of it, we've seen by the results in midweek anything can go." 

Meet the Officials

Lee Swabey will be the man in the middle on Saturday and will be assisted by linesmen Gary Maskell and Daniel Flynn. Anthony Da Costa will complete the line-up as Fourth Official.

Since the start of the season, Swabey has taken charge of 24 games and has handed out 57 yellow cards and two red cards.

Swabey has officiated matches in League One, League Two, the FA Cup and the Football League Trophy this season. The last time he took charge of the Shrimps was back in December 2021, when a goal from Cole Stockton lead the squad to victory against Buxton in the FA Cup Second Round. 


Can’t make it to Stadium MK to back the boys against MK Dons on Saturday afternoon? Not a problem!

After teaming up with Beyond Radio for the 2021/22 season, supporters will be able to listen to exclusive, full and uninterrupted radio commentary of every single game, home and away, which will be broadcast simultaneously on 103.5FM, 107.5FM and DAB+ digital radio across North Lancashire and South Cumbria as well as on the iFollow Shrimps platform.
Audio passes are available from as little as £2.50 per match, £4.49 for a monthly pass or £45 for a season pass.
As well as full match commentary, the ‘Shrimps Verdict’ podcast will be available post-match, featuring online, on demand content, including audio match highlights, post-match interviews and reaction, and much more!

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