Another one from the archives. I think the idea was that I was going to document the season, but clearly I got bored pretty early on.
MooCamp Yearbook 2008/09
Will Ince go?
Or maybe yes.
Or maybe no.
Of course he will.
Of course he won’t.
Dyer went too – all seemed a bit messy to be honest. Dyer claimed he hadn’t been offered a contract, the Dons claimed he was offered the best contract in their history. Lots of rumour and speculation about whether he was offered one, two, three or fifty years on his contract, but I guess it means nothing. He’s gone. Good luck to him.
Will Andrews go? Will Willy go with him? So far no, despite very specific and detailed rumours from the press and within the club. Only time will tell.
Spent the whole of the match in a theme park in sunny Spain, so can’t really comment. Was pleased to find out the result, and felt really weird not being there, but missing the Watford pre-season friendly has become something of a tradition in our household, so it would have been wrong and very difficult to fly back for the match. I went to every competitive match last season – home and away – and felt that I’d kind of got it out of my system, and was looking forward to taking it a bit easier this season. Not basing my whole life around the matches, and being prepared to miss a few.
With that in mind, my wife and I went down to the travel agents sometime in June planning to book our holiday. Due to the possession of a junior Don in the household, we’re restricted to the school holidays, but having insisted last summer that we had to be back for the first match, I was looking forward to taking a more relaxed approach and was expecting to miss a game or two. When the travel agent (who was clearly a closet Don as she noticed the MooCamp badge I was wearing – I am soooo cool) asked when we wanted to go, I heard my Wife’s voice clearly saying “well we need to be back by the start of the season – I’m not missing any matches”. The best laid plans of mice and men and all that…
MK Dons 1 – Reading 1
No Andrews – text at 3:03.
MK Dons 1 Sheffield Wednesday 4
Not the most awe-inspiring of performances, but it was ok
MK Dons 2 – Watford 1
Leicester 2 – MK Dons 0 – Saturday 9th August 2008
Excited. Couldn’t sleep kind of excited. Up early and pacing around from about 6:15am and lots of time to kill. Used up a fair bit of time by avoiding the essay that was due soon. Stuck ‘football’ playlist on PC. Danced and sang a bit. Soon off to collect my own personal Junior Don from her Nana’s place along with my Niece and Nephew.
They’re both of Chelsea origin, and my first objective of the day is to get my revenge. I’m a good natured fellow, even when under pressure, but every now and again, someone acts in such a way as to force me into action. I was seeking revenge for one such action, where my Brother in law overstepped the mark to such a degree, that I’m finding it hard to describe it in polite terms, even though it happened many months ago.
He dressed my own little Junior Don up in a Chelsea top, and took a photo of the crime, with which to taunt me.
Revenge was taken 🙂
Objective number two was to find somewhere to park. It cost us £6, but we found it fairly easily and quickly, so really couldn’t grumble. A quick meet up with a few people outside the ground, a hug with Mrs Half Pint, a shake of the hand with Mr Mrs Half Pint and we were on our way in. Kind steward pointed us towards our seats, assuring us that what we’d heard about people sitting where they wanted was incorrect. Checked with a few people, and established beyond reasonable doubt that people were sitting where they wanted, so we moved up and sat alongside Mr F, Mrs F, Jamie B, Mr SouthStander and a few others.
The atmosphere was great. The match was exciting. The big fat drummer was astounding. The result was disappointing.
We gave them far too much respect from the start, and they pretty much battered us for the first 30 minutes or so. In stages we looked good, and at times we played better football than we usually played under Ince, but we didn’t look too much like scoring for most of the match. Midway through the second half, we were one-nil down, but were starting to look dangerous and had been piling on the pressure. Jude had a Jude moment and got caught in possession, and unfortunately we conceded a second, and from there, we were never going to get back in to it. We were singing to the end, and I came away feeling relatively positive. We hadn’t lost away since Wrexham (probably) and it felt weird to be on the losing side, but I thought we’d played pretty well against a team who were going to be one of the strongest sides we’d face this season, so wasn’t in the least down-hearted.
MK Dons 1 – Norwich 0 – Tuesday 12th August 2008
I wasn’t sure what to expect from this one. On the one hand, we’d had a pretty tough time three days earlier against a team who’d been relegated from Norwich’s division, but on the other hand, we’ve got a pretty good record against Championship sides at home. The last time we played Norwich was in the same competition back at the NHS, and we’d given them a really tough match of it, going out to an extra time goal. Ben Chorley had missed a penalty and had played on when injured, resulting in him missing a good chunk of the next few months, but I remember the match as being really exciting.
Daughter was not well and wife had chosen to stay at home to look after her (I was prepared to look after her myself – honest) even though I’d been encouraging daughter to come along and reassured her that she would be “fine”. I had Wife and Daughters spare ticket in my pocket, and was keen to give at least one of them a good home. I realised that I’d watched the previous Norwich match sitting next to Crabby (this was in the days before wife and daughter had season tickets), and wasn’t sure if he had a ticket for the match, so gave him a call. He didn’t have one and was on his way down to the box office, so the timing was perfect. A deal was struck and I waited for him outside the club shop.
We went into the stadium side by side, and I couldn’t help feeling that it was right and appropriate that we would watch this match together. There was tradition involved, and it seemed to be written. “I don’t have to sit with you do I?” he said, as we walked onto the concourse. He walked off in the opposite direction, and I walked away rather sheepishly…
MK Dons 1 – Northampton 0 – Saturday 16th August 2008
Attendance 12,000 – Away Fans 3500
The run up to the match had seen a slightly higher than usual amount of away fans coming on to the MooCamp to tell us that we weren’t important to them. Usual mix of well-intentioned but ill-informed abuse and just willy-waggling abuse, but nothing interesting or original.
They had a lot of fans and made a bit of noise in the first half, but were almost silent for the majority of the second half. It was great to see so many away fans there though – bearing in mind we’d heard that many Northampton fans were intending to boycott the match because we’re horrible, nasty franchisers, it was pleasant to see more than half of their average home gate had come to see us.
How to sum up the match? We deserved the victory. The first half was a half of two halves (if you’ll excuse the phrase). The first half (of the first half) we were all over them. The second half (of the first half) they were all over us. Andrews wasn’t even on the bench, which led to a lot of whispered conversations about whether he had gone for good. Nothing official was forthcoming, even though a number of us were checking our phones as soon as the match kicked off, in case the club had chosen to reuse their cunning tactic of covering up bad news by announcing it when we were all at the match. At the end of the match, Roberto was reported to have said that there would be no comment except at a press conference, so that would suggest that things are afoot, but we’ll just have to wait and see I guess.
I think what stopped me doing this was the realisation that I really don’t find writing about football matches very interesting. I love writing about all the crap that goes along with football matches, but the matches themselves? Nah. I’m struggling to remember what the text was about that the club sent at 3:03 during the Reading match. I’d presumed it was that Andrews was leaving, but the comments on the Northampton match suggest otherwise. I can remember being really bloody angry at the way the club did it, but I can’t remember what they did. Can you?