Winkelman defiant over Dons name

Pete Winkelman insists MK Dons will not be changing their name in order to appease AFC Wimbledon.

Last Updated: 30/11/12 at 15:51

Winkelman: We are the MK Dons

Winkelman: We are the MK Dons

Free £50 bet

Daily Offers and Promotions, sign up for a free £50 matched bet

Winkelman, MK Dons chairman, was instrumental in Wimbledon FC, FA Cup winners in 1988, relocating from south-west London to the Buckinghamshire city of Milton Keynes in 2003. The club was renamed MK Dons the following year.

While there were financial reasons for the unprecedented move of an English club away from its home town, angry Wimbledon FC fans vowed to save the club's history and formed AFC Wimbledon from scratch in the Combined Counties League.

After five promotions in eight years, AFC Wimbledon, a club owned by a fans' trust, are now back in the Football League, just one division below npower League One promotion challengers MK Dons.

The two clubs are set to meet for the first time on Sunday in the FA Cup second round.

Since the draw was made AFC Wimbledon officials and supporters' groups have called for the Milton Keynes "franchise", as they refer to the club, to drop the moniker Dons from their name.

But Winkelman said: "I've been very clear about this. I'm a custodian of the club and the only way our name could ever change is if our supporters demanded it.

"I take responsibility for the club getting here, but now it's here it's actually the responsibility of all of us.

"And I think it's incredibly clear, and clear in every conversation I have, that we are the MK Dons, we're going to stay the MK Dons, and in the future we're going to be the MK Dons."

Demanding MK Dons change their name is one of many angry reactions from the AFC Wimbledon camp since it became apparent they would have to play in Milton Keynes.

AFC Wimbledon chairman Erik Samuelson has said he will not acknowledge Winkelman on Sunday and he and the club's other officials will snub the chance to sit in the directors' box at stadium:mk.

AFC Wimbledon fans have threatened to boycott the game while some that are making the 50-plus mile trip north out of London are thought to be turning up in contamination suits.

Winkelman added: "I do understand that on this special occasion, this historic occasion, this first meeting, that they (AFC Wimbledon officials) would rather sit with their own supporters. If there is a replay, I will do the same.

"But I was disappointed to hear about the boycott, I hope that doesn't happen. Boycotting your team or leaving your team alone is perhaps the worst way of voicing your disapproval of what went on."

Samuelson has urged those AFC Wimbledon fans that do make the journey to be on their best behaviour and do nothing to harm the reputation of the club.

He told the club's official website: "We should use this as an opportunity to remind everyone just what a brilliant thing we've done over the past 10 years.

"A club's reputation is critical to its success, and our reputation comes in no small part from us always seeking to do things the right way, both on and off the pitch.

"Because our reputation is so important to us, it is critical that we conduct ourselves well while we are on our way to the game and at the game.

"There will be provocations, some deliberate but many unintended. If we react with behaviour that puts our wonderful club in a bad light, the price could be very high.

"So I appeal to all our fans not to react to provocation and, so far as is possible, to make the game a celebration of what we've achieved over the past 10 years."

Free £50 bet

Daily Offers and Promotions, sign up for a free £50 matched bet

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

e made his power play to try and get Sheikhy to raise his wages or trade him to PSG. PSG were probably not interested and he is stuck with no cake and no vacation. @Jay_D> Surely you jest about FFP being real, right? All Platini is doing is making billionaries pay measly fines, so he and his cronies can get rich. If a fool can pay 50 mil for David Luiz, he will happily pay some fine to UEFA. FFP has failed as for it to succeed UEFA had to take it...

Synergy
Toure: I am staying with City

G

uess we can expect Toure's explanation of his behaviour around the same time Pete Townshend publishes his book then.

ceeps
Toure: I am staying with City

D

amn you Yaya, don't scare me like that! I only ate the icing. I didn't eat the soft and scrumptious middle - I will buy you another cake!

MCFC87
Toure: I am staying with City

Footer 365

Transfer News: Real Madrid sign James Rodriguez from Monaco in £63million deal

Real Madrid have signed Colombian star James Rodriguez from Monaco in a £63million deal.

Friendly: Siem de Jong and Emmanuel Riviere score in Newcastle victory

Debutant Emmanuel Riviere was amongst the scorers as Newcastle cruised to an emotional 4-0 friendly win over Sydney FC.

Premier League: Cardiff captain Steven Caulker to have QPR medical

Cardiff defender Steven Caulker is having a medical with QPR, Sky sources understand.

Mail Box

Anyone But Rooney. Or Baines. Or Hart.

There isn't a great deal of excitement in the Mailbox regarding England's potential new captain, but we have good stuff on Gerrard's development and a one club man team...

Goodbye Patrice And Farewell Steven...

Man United fans say a fond farewell to Patrice Evra in the mailbox while there are also thoughts on Steven Gerrard's retirement from England duty. Plus, some rare cricket bantz...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property