SeasideEssexXile looks at Stadium: MK ahead of tomorrow’s cup clash at Milton Keynes.
Stadium MK – MK Dons
No let up for us big boys, and realistically the League Cup offers us our best chance of silverware this season.
Straight on the back of a pounding by the Arse we are sent packing to Milton Keynes for what you would like to think should be a straightforward cup game. Now this cup has never been one of our favourites and if ever there was an opportunity to rebuild any confidence dips then this should be it. Famous last Pool fan words – SHOULD.
The National Hockey Stadium said goodbye in 2007. Along with other Pool fans I went there 3 times and what a mish mash it was. That side stand rivalled the GK for uniqueness but step forward a Chairman that plans ahead (some might say perhaps a little too far but still ahead) and Winkleman enterprises brings us to a stadium that has a 22000 capacity, plans to build it to 30000 and if the 2018 bid is successful then the Stadium MK will have a capacity of 43,044. Two tiers can become three and eventually fourne word for it impressive.
The ground cost £50m to build and was built by the same company who built Wembley and the Emirates. Padded seats and plenty of legroom the ground has a real quality finish to it. Wait for this, the concourses are positioned so you can still watch the game whilst queuing for your burger / ale. Now I like the sound of that. At half time at Bloomers the only people attempting to get any refreshments are unknowingly taking part in the all England British Bulldog Championship.
We`ll be sat in the NE corner, room for 3000, although I expect around the 5-600 mark to travel.
How To Get There
M55, M6 South to the M1. Leave the 1 at Junction 15 and turn right on to the A508 signposted Stony Stratford, follow this road for 14 miles, until you come to a roundabout at the A5, take the left turn heading south. After a few miles leave the A5 at the junction of the A421, as signposted by the AA stadium:mk signs.
Or if you prefer more motorway driving, then continue South on the M1 to junction 14:Take the A509 towards Milton Keynes. At the first roundabout take the third exit on to Portway (signposted A509 (A5) Central Milton Keynes). Keep straight on this road crossing nine roundabouts. You will see the Hockey Stadium over on your left and will pass a McDonalds outlet. At the next roundabout, turn left onto the A5 (signposted Dunstable/London). Leave the A5 at the junction of the A421, as signposted by the AA stadium mk signs.
SatNavvers: MK1 1ST if that doesn`t work put in MK1 1QB which is the code for the nearby ASDA.
Parking at the ground – £5.
For the Virgin lovers amongst us:
The two stations nearest to the stadium are Bletchley and Milton Keynes Central. Bletchley is approximately a 25-minute walk from the stadium site and Milton Keynes Central is a 30-40 minute walk. Both routes are along Milton Keynes Redways
Hackney Carriages charge a fixed fee of £9 from Central Milton Keynes Station to the stadium. Licensed private hire companies will be less than this.
For those flying Samm Airways:
Luton is the closest airport about 18 miles away.
Where to Drink:
The nearest pub to the ground is the Beacon which is around a 10 minute walk away, in the nearby Mount Farm area. With the stadium entrance in front of you and Asda over to the right, then the pub is located on an industrial estate behind the stadium. From the back of the the stadium cross over the road and go down Dawson Road which is in front of you. At the bottom of Dawson Road turn right into Bond Avenue and the pub is down on the right, situated next to a small lake
A hotel has also recently been built at the stadium, and is home to the Red Dot Bar, into which away fans are usually welcomed provided any colours are kept reasonably discrete. About a 15 minute walk away towards Bletchley is the Enigma Tavern on Saxon Street – follow the signs for Bletchley by Asda and you will reach the pub on your left.
The Fenny Stratford which is located a mile south of the stadium along Watling Street. Fenny has seven pubs within a five minute walk of each other plus a fish and chip shop’.
Ale is also on sale within the ground.
Plod & Stewards
I`ll go on record as saying that on previous visits I found the MK stewards to be the most polite and friendliest I`ve ever come across (are you listening Cov / Donny?)
There`ll be no agg on the night.
Fear Factor Rating – 0
I`ve no doubt Pool will play some fringe players and will look to get the fitness of the new arrivals up. As I said previously the League Cup has never been our favourite cup and do we look to progress (let`s face it we don`t need the money unless Pittman`s move to Brizzle falls through) or do we look to concentrate on the league?
Personally I always want us to win every game we play and I think Holloway will use this game to get us winning again.
Here`s hoping it`s done and dusted by 10pm and the only noise you`ll hear from their fans in the Cowshed are the ones moo-aning about the mighty going into the hat for the 3rd round and not that of MK Dons.