Garner: "We need to show our attacking intent and keep our great form at The Valley going"

Ben Garner taking training

Ben Garner will be looking to make it four wins in a row when the Addicks host MK Dons on Tuesday evening but he is well aware of the challenge his side’s opponents pose.

Charlton are unbeaten at The Valley this season and will be confident of securing another three points but face an MK side who finished third in League One last season, although currently sit bottom of the division.

Speaking at his pre-game press conference, Garner said: “They are a really good team, with a good manager and were in the playoffs last season. They lost a couple of key players in the summer and they’ve had to rebuild, a lot of recruitment, they have a really talented squad, some hugely experienced players within their ranks and also some really exciting young players. They have a clear identity and a clear ethos as a football club, by no means can we take MK Dons lightly. They are a good side, play good football, pose different threats but we need to show our attacking intent and keep our great form at The Valley going and try and focus on getting another win and moving further up the table.”

Charlton’s unbeaten run has been helped by the returns of full backs Mandela Egbo and Steven Sessegnon.

Garner said: “The key [to building partnerships] is having people fit and available. We were unfortunate at the start of the season to lose two full backs to injury. We only went into the season with three full backs and to lose two of them was a big blow to be honest.

“We had to try and find a way through that period and we did so, to have Manny and Sess both fit now, along with Sean [Clare] and with young Richard Chin, who has done really well and is a fourth option there and competition, I think that has really helped.

“The more these players play together and develop partnerships and relationships, the stronger those bonds will become, the greater their understanding will become and hopefully we’ll keep getting stronger as a team.”

Support the Addicks, click here to get your ticket to Tuesday's game against MK Dons at The Valley.

Of the league games Sessegnon has started this season, Charlton have won four, drawn three and lost just once.

Garner has been pleased with what he has seen from the left back: “Sess has come in and really brought into the football side but also the sports science side. For example, his strength has really improved in what he can do and that will play a key part in keeping him fit and having him more robust and available for more games.

“I really like his character, he’s an energiser, Sess, he’s always positive, he’s always around people in the group. He’s a really talented player and I think there is a lot more to come from him with more games and more time on the pitch.”

The Charlton Manager was also asked about the impact of George Dobson, who has formed strong partnership alongside Scott Fraser in a midfield two in recent weeks. Garner said: “I’ve been really impressed with George, both as a character and as a player. I think he’s maturing as a person. He’s still young, he’s coming towards his mid-20s, he’s really improved this season. He’s really brought in to how we want to play, what we want to do and there are areas of his game, that maybe weren’t as strong, that now are and he’s worked really hard on those areas. What he gives us without the ball is energy, is commitment to the team, he’s a fans’ favourite and rightly so.”

Support the Addicks, click here to get your ticket to Tuesday's game against MK Dons at The Valley.

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