Milton Keynes Dons F.C.
|Full name||Milton Keynes Dons Football Club|
|Short name||MK Dons|
|2012–13||League One, 11th|
|Website||Club home page|
Milton Keynes Dons Football Club (/ /; usually abbreviated to MK Dons) is a professional football club founded in 2004 and based since 2007 at Stadium mk, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, England. The club currently plays in League One, the third tier in the English football league system.
Milton Keynes Dons were created on 21 June 2004, nine months after Wimbledon F.C.'s relocation to Milton Keynes in September 2003 and its subsequent administration and renaming. Being in law the same business, MK Dons initially claimed the history of Wimbledon F.C. as its own, but stopped doing so in 2007, in part to ensure the recognition of its supporters' groups by the Football Supporters' Federation, which had previously boycotted the team. Since 2007, the board of MK Dons has maintained that the club is a new one, founded in 2004.
Following Wimbledon F.C.'s relegation, MK Dons played in League One for the 2004–05 season and were relegated again to the fourth-tier League Two after 2005–06. Under the management of Paul Ince, the club won both the division and the Football League Trophy during the 2007–08 season, and were promoted back to League One for 2008–09, where as of 2012–13 they remain.
The first season for the club as MK Dons was the 2004–05 season. At the season's start, the team still being managed by former Wimbledon manager Stuart Murdoch, who was sacked after a long run of bad results, and replaced by Danny Wilson half-way through the campaign. Under their new manager, MK Dons managed to stay in League One on the final day of the season — but only because of Wrexham's 10-point deduction that had been their penalty for going into administration. The following season, MK Dons struggled all year, and were relegated to League Two. Wilson, as a result, was sacked.
Wilson's successor for 2006–07 was Martin Allen, who had just taken Brentford to the brink of a place in the Football League Championship. With a new manager taking charge of a team in a new division, MK Dons looked more consistent than they had done in either of the previous two seasons. They were in contention for automatic promotion right up to the last game, but eventually finished fourth and had to settle for a play-off place. They then suffered a defeat to Shrewsbury Town in the play-off semi-finals. During the 2007 summer break, Allen left MK Dons to take over at Leicester City.
For the 2007–08 season, former England captain Paul Ince took over as manager. MK Dons reached the final of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy, while topping the table for most of the season. The final was played on 30 March against Grimsby Town — Milton Keynes Dons won 2–0 at Wembley to bring the first professional trophy to Milton Keynes. The club capped the trophy win with the League Two championship, and the subsequent promotion to League One for the 2008–09 season. Following his successes, Ince left at the end of the season to manage Blackburn Rovers.
Ince's replacement was Roberto Di Matteo. In the 2008–9 season, MK Dons missed out to an automatic promotion spot by two points, finishing third behind Peterborough United and Leicester City. They were knocked out of the play-offs by Scunthorpe United, who defeated MK Dons by penalty shootout at stadium mk. Di Matteo left at the season's end for West Bromwich Albion. His replacement was Ince, who returned a year after leaving. Ince resigned from the club on 16 April 2010, but remained manager until the end of the season.
On 10 May 2010, Karl Robinson was appointed as the club's new manager, with former England coach John Gorman as his assistant. At 29 years of age, Robinson is the youngest manager in the Football League. In his first season in the club MK Dons finished 5th in 2010-11 Football League One. They faced Peterborough United in the play-off semifinals. Although they won the first leg 3–2, a 2–0 defeat at London Road meant they missed out on the play-off final. The 2011–12 season brought similar results to the previous season with the Dons finishing 5th in 2011-12 Football League One facing Huddersfield in the play-offs. Losing the first leg 2–0 followed by winning 2–1 at The Galpharm saw MK Dons lose 3–2 on aggregate against the eventual play-off winners. The away leg was John Gorman's last match in football after announcing his retirement a few weeks beforehand. Gorman's replacement was announced on 18 May 2012 as being ex-Luton manager Mick Harford along with new part-time coach Ian Wright.
MK Dons experienced their best ever FA Cup campaign in the 2012–13 season by beating a spirited Cambridge City (0–0 and 6–1), League Two AFC Wimbledon (2–1), Championship Sheffield Wednesday (0–0 and 2–0) and Premier League Queens Park Rangers (4–2) to reach the Fifth Round of the competition for the first time ever in their footballing history. Their record-breaking run ended in the Fifth Round at stadium:mk on 16 February 2013, losing 3–1 to Championship side Barnsley.
Supporters' club recognition
On 4 June 2005, at the 2005 Football Supporters' Federation "Fans' Parliament" (AGM), the FSF refused the MK Dons Supporters' Club membership of the FSF in a debate that, among other arguments, questioned why the Football League had yet to introduce any new rules to prevent the "franchising" of other football clubs in the future. In addition, the FSF membership agreed with the Wimbledon Independent Supporters' Association that the Milton Keynes Dons Supporters' Association should not be entitled to join the FSF until they give up all claim to the history and honours of Wimbledon FC. With this in mind, the FSF began discussions aimed at returning Wimbledon FC's honours to the London Borough of Merton.
Shortly afterwards, following heavy criticism for allowing the move, the Football League announced new tighter rules on club relocation.
At its AGM on 5 June 2006, the FSF again considered a motion proposed by the FSF Council to allow MK Dons Supporters Association membership if the honours and trophies of Wimbledon FC were given to the London Borough of Merton. In October 2006, agreement was reached between the club, the MK Dons Supporters Association, the Wimbledon Independent Supporters' Association and the Football Supporters Federation. The replica of the FA Cup plus all club patrimony gathered under the name of Wimbledon F.C. would be returned to the London Borough of Merton. Ownership of trademarks and website domain names related to Wimbledon F.C. would also be transferred to the Borough. The Borough subsequently transferred all trademarks to AFC Wimbledon. As part of the same deal it was agreed that any reference made to Milton Keynes Dons FC should refer only to events subsequent to 7 August 2004 (the date of the first League game of Milton Keynes Dons FC). As a result of this deal, the FSF announced that the supporters of Milton Keynes Dons FC would be permitted to become members of the federation, and that it would no longer appeal to the supporters of other clubs to boycott MK Dons matches. On 2 August 2007, MK Dons transferred the replica trophies and all Wimbledon FC memorabilia to the London Borough of Merton.
The club's first stadium was the National Hockey Stadium, which was temporarily converted for football for the duration of the club's stay. Their lease on this ground ended in May 2007.
On 18 July 2007, the club's new 22,000 seater, stadium mk in Denbigh hosted its first game, a restricted entrance event against a young Chelsea XI. The stadium was officially opened on 29 November 2007 by Queen Elizabeth II. The stadium features an open concourse at the top of the lower tier, an integrated hotel with rooms looking over the pitch and conference facilities
The complex was to include a 3,000 seat indoor arena, where the MK Lions (now London Lions) basketball team would be based. The completion of this arena was delayed due to deferral of proposed commercial developments around the site, leaving the Lions to find a new home away from Milton Keynes.
Through the work of MK Dons SET (Sport and Educational Trust), the club works locally (Milton Keynes and the neighbouring towns) in the fields of education, social inclusion, participation and football development. It works with schools, has 14 disability teams playing in regional or national competitions, works with BME (black and minority ethnic) community groups and runs many activities for women and girls. MK Dons also supports the Football v Homophobia initiative (one of only 25 premiership and football league clubs supporting the programme in 2012 and only 30 in 2013).
MK Dons' work in the community was recognised by the award of Football League Awards Community Club of the Year for London and the South East for 2012, and in the award of an honorary doctorate to chairman Pete Winkelman by the Open University in June 2013.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (May 2012)|
- Only seasons played by Milton Keynes Dons are given here. For a statistical history of Wimbledon F.C., see List of Wimbledon F.C. seasons.
- Statistics are correct as of 2 May 2009.
|Other competitions||Top scorer||Average
|2004–05||League One||46||12||15||19||54||67||51||20th||R3||R2||Football League Trophy||R2S||Izale McLeod||18||4,896|
|2005–06||League One||46||12||14||20||45||66||50||22nd||R3||R1||Football League Trophy||QFS||Izale McLeod||18||5,619|
|2006–07||League Two||46||25||9||12||76||58||84||4th||R2||R3||Football League Trophy||R2S||Izale McLeod||24||6,033|
|2007–08||League Two||46||29||10||7||82||37||97||1st||R1||R2||Football League Trophy||W||Mark Wright||15||9,456|
|2008–09||League One||46||26||9||11||83||39||87||3rd||R1||R2||Football League Trophy||R2S||Aaron Wilbraham||16||10,550|
|2009–10||League One||46||19||7||20||60||68||60||12th||R3||R1||Football League Trophy||FS||Jermaine Easter||20||10,290|
|2010–11||League One||46||23||8||15||67||60||77||5th||R1||R3||Football League Trophy||R2||Sam Baldock||14||8,512|
|2011–12||League One||46||22||14||10||84||47||80||5th||R3||R3||Football League Trophy||R1||Dean Bowditch||15||8,794|
|2012–13||League One||46||19||13||14||62||45||70||8th||R5||R3||Football League Trophy||R1||Dean Bowditch
- As of 30 July 2013.
Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
- This list contains players who have made 100 or more league appearances. Appearances and goals apply to league matches only; substitute appearances are included. Names in bold denote current MK Dons players.
- Statistics are correct as of 27 May 2013.
|Baldock, SamSam Baldock||England||Forward||2006–11||102||33|
|Chadwick, LukeLuke Chadwick||England||Midfielder||2008–||187||16|
|Edds, GarethGareth Edds||Australia||Midfielder||2004–08||122||10|
|Guéret, WillyWilly Guéret||France||Goalkeeper||2007–11||135||0|
|Gleeson, StephenStephen Gleeson||Ireland||Midfielder||2009–||139||13|
|Lewington, DeanDean Lewington||England||Defender||2004–||387||15||[B]|
|Leven, PeterPeter Leven||Scotland||Midfielder||2008–11||113||22|
|McLeod, IzaleIzale McLeod||England||Forward||2004–07
|O'Hanlon, SeanSean O'Hanlon||England||Defender||2006–11||157||15|
|Platt, CliveClive Platt||England||Forward||2005–07||102||27|
|Wilbraham, AaronAaron Wilbraham||England||Forward||2005–11||178||50|
|Martin, DavidDavid Martin||England||Goalkeeper||2004–06
|Kouo-Doumbé, MathiasMathias Kouo-Doumbé||France||Defender||2009–2013||121||11|
|Powell, DanielDaniel Powell||England||Forward||2008–||114||24|
|Karl Robinson||First-team manager|
|Gary Waddock||Head of Coaching|
|Gary Woddock||First-team coach|
|Paul Heald||Goalkeeping coach|
|Damien Doyle||Fitness coach|
|Simon Crampton||Head of sports medicine|
|Andrew Sanson||Kit manager|
|Mike Dove||Director of youth/Under-18s manager|
|Dan Micciche||Assistant academy manager|
|Karim Suleman||Head academy physiotherapist|
|Joe Aylett||Head groundsman|
|Dr Martin Cave||Club doctor|
|Dr Turab A Syed||Academy doctor|
|Dr Gary D Jackson||Chiropractor|
The first manager of Milton Keynes Dons was Stuart Murdoch, who had previously been manager of Wimbledon. Murdoch only lasted three months before being sacked — his assistant, Jimmy Gilligan, managed the club for a month before Murdoch's replacement was revealed to be Danny Wilson. Wilson managed to keep the team up during the inaugural 2004–05 season, but failed to repeat this feat during the next season. Following relegation, Wilson was shown the door and replaced with Martin Allen. After Allen's team fell at the play-offs, he left to manage Leicester City. Paul Ince was appointed manager for the 2007–08 season, and proved to be a shrewd appointment as MK Dons won the League Two championship as well as the Football League Trophy. Ince too left after only a season, to become manager of Blackburn Rovers. Former Chelsea player Roberto di Matteo was then appointed in July 2008, and left after a season to manage West Bromwich Albion. Ince was reappointed in his stead on 3 July 2009. Paul Ince resigned as Manager on 16 April 2010, stating "a reduction in funds for next season was the reason behind his decision to leave", although he will remain with the club until the end of the 2009/10 season.
Karl Robinson was appointed manager of League One team Milton Keynes Dons on 10 May 2010, having previously been the club's assistant manager under previous boss Paul Ince. At 30 years of age, he was the youngest manager in the Football League and former England coach John Gorman was named his number two. He was also the youngest person to ever acquire a UEFA Pro Licence at the age of 29. At the end of the 2011–12 season Gorman retired and was replaced by former Luton player/manager Mick Harford. At the same time, ex-Arsenal and former England international Ian Wright was also enlisted in a part-time role to provide assistance with coaching duties.
In January 2013, Robinson turned down an offer to manage Blackpool FC, a well established Championship and former Premier League team, in favour of his continuing commitment and loyalty towards MK Dons, something which has endeared him to the fans of MK Dons.
- Statistics are correct as of 27 May 2013.
|Murdoch, StuartStuart Murdoch||England||7 August 2004||8 November 2004||21||5||5||11||23.8||[C]|
|Gilligan, JimmyJimmy Gilligan||England||8 November 2004||7 December 2004||4||2||0||2||50.0||Caretaker|
|Wilson, DannyDanny Wilson||Northern Ireland||7 December 2004||21 June 2006||81||25||32||24||30.9|||
|Allen, MartinMartin Allen||England||21 June 2006||25 May 2007||46||25||9||12||54.3|||
|Ince, PaulPaul Ince||England||25 June 2007||21 June 2008||55||35||11||9||63.6|||
|di Matteo, RobertoRoberto di Matteo||Italy||3 July 2008||30 June 2009||40||22||7||12||55.0|||
|Ince, PaulPaul Ince||England||3 July 2009||10 May 2010||44||22||4||18||50|||
|Robinson, KarlKarl Robinson||England||10 May 2010||Present||167||77||42||48||46.1|
Club records and achievements
Record home attendance: 19,506 v Queens Park Rangers, FA Cup Third Round, 7 January 2012 (stadium:mk)
Record home league attendance : 17,717 v Leicester City, League One, 28 February 2009 (stadium:mk)
Youngest Football League Manager: Karl Robinson (b. 13 September 1980) May 2010 – Present
Trophies Won : Johnstone's Paint Trophy 2008 (beat Grimsby Town 2–0 at Wembley Stadium)
Most prolific player : Dean Lewington 400+ League One/Two matches with MK Dons
Best FA Cup Progression : Fifth Round, 2013 (lost 3–1 to Barnsley on 16 February 2013)
Youngest Player: Giorgio Rasulo – 15 years and 10 months
- A. ^ For a full description of positions see Football Positions.
- B. ^ Dean Lewington had previously played for Wimbledon before the club's rebranding. 7 August 2004 is the date of Milton Keynes Dons's first league match, and so is given as the date on which Lewington ceased to play for Wimbledon and began to play for Milton Keynes Dons.
- C. ^ Stuart Murdoch had previously managed Wimbledon before the club's rebranding. 7 August 2004 is the date of Milton Keynes Dons's first league match, and so is given as the date on which Murdoch ceased to manage Wimbledon and began to manage Milton Keynes Dons.
- "Baggies confirm Di Matteo as boss". BBC Sport. BBC. 30 June 2009. Retrieved 11 September 2013.
- "Ince reappointed as MK Dons boss". BBC. 3 July 2009. Retrieved 3 July 2009.
- Paul Ince announces that he will leave MK Dons at the end of the season
- "Dons spring surprise by appointing Robinson as new boss". BBC. 10 May 2010. Retrieved 10 May 2010.
- FSF Annual Report for 2005 Motion 1 on pages 6
- FSF Annual Report for 2006 minutes pages 44/45
- "Rule changes from League's AGM". The Football League. Retrieved 16 September 2008.
- FSF Annual Report for 2006 Motion 6 (pages 6)
- Accord on patrimony of Wimbledon FC MKDSA website.
- FSF press release "MK Dons agree to return Wimbledon trophies to Merton – and sanction amendments to football statistics"
- Merton given back Dons trophies
- Dons open stadium against Chelsea. BBC. 19 July 2007.
- The Queen visits Milton Keynes. BBC. 30 November 2007.
- Winkelman can't guarantee arena! – MK Citizen 26 November 2008
- Milton Keynes in dreamland after being selected for World Cup bid The Times, 17 December 2009
- World Cup 2015 will use only two traditional club rugby grounds – The Guardian, Thursday 2 May 2013
- MK Dons SET
- Football v Homophobia
- MK Dons chairman receives Honorary Doctorate from The Open University The Open University June 6th, 2013
- Richard Rundle. "Football Club History Database – Milton Keynes Dons". Football Club History Database. Retrieved 29 April 2009.
- "Profiles". Milton Keynes Dons F.C. Retrieved 7 August 2008.
- "Soccerbase – The Internet Soccer Database". Soccerbase. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
- "Murdoch takes reins". BBC. 25 June 2002. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
- "Murdoch axed by Dons". BBC. 8 November 2004. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
- "Farewell to Jim and Martyn". Milton Keynes Dons F.C. 22 December 2004. Retrieved 29 April 2008.
- "Wilson named Milton Keynes boss". BBC. 7 December 2004. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
- "Dons appoint new manager". BBC. 27 June 2006. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
- "Allen named new Leicester manager". BBC. 25 May 2007. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
- "Ince unveiled as new MK Dons boss". BBC. 25 June 2007. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
- "Blackburn appoint Ince as manager". BBC. 22 June 2008. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
- "Di Matteo appointed MK Dons coach". BBC. 2 July 2008. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
- "Manager History for MK Dons (formerly Wimbledon)". Soccerbase. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
- "MK Dons appoint Karl Robinson, 29, as their new manager". London: Daily Mail. 11 May 2010. Retrieved 11 May 2010.
- "MK Dons reject Blackpool approach to speak to manager Karl Robinson". guardian.co.uk. Press Association. 16 January 2013.
- "Bradford 1–2 MK Dons (Match Report)". BBC Sport. 26 April 2008.
- Mitchener, Mark (30 March 2008). "Grimsby Town 0–2 MK Dons (Match Report)". BBC Sport.
- "MK Dons 1–1 QPR". BBC Sport. BBC. 7 January 2012. Retrieved 11 September 2013.
- "Match stats – MK Dons v Leicester City – guardian.co.uk". guardian.co.uk. 16 February 2013.
- "Results Fixtures 2008–2009 Milton Keynes Dons – Milton Keynes Dons FC – Dons Mad". Dons Mad. 16 February 2013.