Dele Alli return boosts Dons for start of decisive slog at Swindon
Since scoring midfielder Dele Alli sustained an injury, MK Dons have won just three of seven League One outings, but coach Karl Robinson has confirmed his talented teenager will return to action at Swindon Town.
It’s a decisive game for the Dons’ automatic promotion hopes, and recent history is on their side with them winning the last two head-to-heads 2-1. An away victory in Wiltshire is a 21/10 chance with Coral in this televised Saturday lunchtime offering.
Of 14-goal league top scorer Alli, Milton Keynes club manager Robinson said: “He will definitely be involved in the game, and it is touch and go whether he will start. We will have to consult Tottenham and tell them what is going on, [but] he will definitely be travelling and definitely involved.”
Alli, who was purchased by Spurs in the winter window but loaned back to the Dons, netted in the reverse fixture at stadium:MK, and is 23/10 for a repeat performance anytime. Superb odds of 7/1 say he shall net last upon his return.
Northern Ireland frontman Will Grigg, meanwhile, has three in as many matches, and is a tasty 2/1 in the anytime market. Compatriot Ben Reeves (calf) and midfielder Carl Baker both sit this one out, though.
MK also have former West Ham United winger Rob Hall in on loan from Bolton Wanderers, and he is 14/5 to be on target here. Andy Cole’s son Devante is another talent to watch out for, temporarily at Milton Keynes from Manchester City, and he is the same price as Grigg to get a goal.
The Dons trail Swindon by a point, but moving above them would keep their hopes of avoiding the play-offs, alive. Town have lost just twice at home since Christmas, and that explains why they are 13/10 favourites for the win.
Mark Cooper’s men have at least one game in hand on all the teams that are in and around them, meaning unlike the visitors, this is not last chance saloon territory in the race for automatic promotion. A draw is 9/4, but Swindon’s superb home record is down to an ensemble cast.
Chief among those is League One’s joint-leading marksman Andy Williams, who has 20 strikes this season. He is a 6/4 anytime chance, while fellow forward Michael Smith is better at 13/8 in that market.
One to watch here is Australia midfielder Massimo Luongo, who is one of several Swindon players with Spurs connections. A mouth-watering individual battle between him and Alli is the main attraction here, with Asian Cup winner Luongo 16/5 to net antyime.
As Town’s home losses have occurred in their previous four, however, the Dons do look delicious value at 10/1 to win 2-1.