‘Points on the board’ or ‘Games in hand’? Milton Keynes will be hoping the former sees them promotion-bound


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With only four fixture rounds remaining in the Sky Bet League One season, two sides find themselves vying for a final promotion place.

Milton Keynes Dons have broken into the automatic promotion positions at the expense of Rotherham United and are this year hoping the adage rings true.

The age-old debate amongst supporters ponders which is the greater advantage at the dying embers of the campaign, being in front on the table, or being positions behind but with extra matches to be played?

This conundrum once again raises its head as Rotherham United and Milton Keynes Dons jostle for position to earn themselves tier two football next campaign.

From The Dons’ perspective, they sit second behind Wigan Athletic and crucially three points ahead of Rotherham, on 83, but have played one match more.

A lot has been spoken of their meteoric form and position thanks to a string of results totalling 14 unbeaten, destroying teams on route and putting teams such as Crewe, Lincoln City and Sunderland to the sword.

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With such a sharp upturn in form, it is important that those who have come in from the exterior hit the ground running, just as wing back Kaine Kesler-Hayden has done.

Having arrived just over two months ago to compete alongside Tennai Watson for the starting birth, the latter suffered a season-ending injury which handed over the reigns completely to the loanee from Aston Villa.

Capable of playing on either flank, Kesler-Hayden has left his mark on the supporters at Stadium MK giving a string of impressive performances, scoring once, and assisting once also during his eleven-match stint.

Another loanee who has impressed for Milton Keynes since his arrival from Wolverhampton Wanderers, Theo Corbeanu, spent the first half of the season at Hillsborough playing for Sheffield Wednesday, their 43rd fixture of the campaign.

The pacey and skilful winger who has been playing during his stint in Buckinghamshire as a wing back or second striker has become more of an impact substitute in recent weeks, however his arrival on to the field delights fans given his willingness to commit his marker, forcing errors amongst the opposition defence.

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If the Dons are to get a positive result from today’s match, a lot will depend on how Corbeanu and Kesler-Hayden exploit the flank.

It is almost inevitable that Kesler-Hayden will start at right wing back with Corbeanu either replacing or strengthening the right wing playing more advanced at some point in tonight’s match, as the Canadian winger has made an impact off the substitute’s bench just as he has done in four of the club’s last five matches.

Sheffield Wednesday have their own promotion ambitions and will be hoping to get themselves into the playoffs come the end of the campaign. Currently seventh and only three points behind Sunderland in the last playoff place, it will be a tough task to earn all the points for either side.

Darren Moore takes his Owls down the M1 knowing that they themselves have only lost once in their last ten matches so both teams should enter the field high on confidence.

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Liam Manning of course will be hoping for three points to keep them firmly inside the Promotion places with such a short number of games remaining, however, they may actually kick off outside of the top two.

Rotherham play at home to Ipswich Town in the lunchtime kick off and given their superior goal difference from the beginning of the season, sitting at +35, there is every chance that all three points could belong to the Millers. Ipswich are sitting in mid-table with their playoff hopes all-but dead in the water.

They will be no pushovers though and if form can tell you anything heading into the match, Rotherham sit in 21st place picking up only four points from their last five matches.

On Tuesday, Rotherham suffered a 3-0 drubbing at the hands of Portsmouth, who themselves only sit one place higher than Ipswich in the table, so this shows how tough a game this will be.

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After falling to defeat at Adams Park yesterday Plymouth Argyle, the only other team capable of breaking into the top two, saw their ambitions falter and now realistically have to settle for a playoff position and securing home-field advantage in the second leg.

The only thing inevitable about the Sky Bet League One promotion race is that will go down to the wire.

With such a tight race unfolding between two teams constantly chopping and changing places, we will soon find out who benefited from the fixture-list, Milton Keynes with the points on the board or Rotherham United with their solitary game in hand.

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Covering Milton Keynes Dons football, Northants Steelbacks Cricket and the England International side also. https://twitter.com/themalicat

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