Former Hearts boss Robbie Neilson takes a hands on role at MK Dons draw



Former Hearts head coach Robbie Neilson took a hands-on role at MK Dons during Saturday’s FA Cup draw at Charlton, despite being appointed manager less than 24 hours earlier.

Neilson sat in the directors’ box for the second round clash at the Valley but was not content just to watch on from the sidelines.

Caretaker boss Richie Barker admitted that the 36-year-old addressed the players before the tie and at half-time, even though Neilson had only been confirmed as the new Dons manager late on Friday afternoon.

robbie-neilsonBarker said: “He left most of the pre-match to me, I did the training.

“But he did the talking before the game and he took half time. I didn’t even go in the dressing room.

“I believe if there are too many voices, it can confuse things. It’s his club now.

“I thought we deserved to win the game. We were by far the better team in the first half and arguably had the best chance in the final minute.

“I don’t think there’s any doubt that we were the best team and should have won it.

“And at the end, I just thanked the players for their efforts.”

Neilson, who signed off as Hearts manager with a 2-0 win over Rangers last Wednesday following two-and-a-half years in the Tynecastle dugout, is set to be officially unveiled to the media this afternoon and will take charge of his first match in tomorrow’s Checkatrade Trophy clash away to Yeovil.

Neilson is expected to confirm Hearts assistant head coach Stevie Crawford as his number two at stadium MK and Barker admits he faces an uncertain future.

He said: “I honestly don’t know. I’ll come in on Monday, talk to who I need to talk to and take it from there.

“I’ve done my bit, I won’t be getting in the way. It would be tough for them to have me on the training ground.”