Karl Robinson had to read his players the riot act at half time against Bristol City and remind them what it meant to wear an MK Dons shirt.
Antony Kay’s error gifted the opening goal to Jonathan Kodjia after just five minutes at Ashton Gate as the battle at the bottom of the Championship looked to be swinging in the favour of the Robins.
But after a poor first half from the side from MK, a different Dons side appeared in the second but they were made to wait until the fourth minute of stoppage time before Daniel Powell equalised.
The result is huge for Dons on many levels. Not only does it end a run of six defeats, but also sees them avoid dropping to the foot of the table. In fact, they climb to 19th as a result.
Robinson though felt some of his players needed reminding just what they were being paid to do after the first half display.
“I asked a few questions at half time,” said manager Robinson afterwards. “I had to remind people what it meant to wear our shirt and how we do things here. We should be wearing the shirt with pride. I only accept the best and I didn’t see that in the first half.
“But we were excellent in the second half. Every player deserved that point. It’s probably what we deserved. We were poor for the first 25 minutes.”
Kay’s error - dawdling on the ball to allow Bobby Reid to feed Kodjia for a simple finish after five minutes - gave City, who remain bottom of the league after Powell’s late strike, the impetus to take the game on and they looked by far and away the better side in the opening 45 minutes.
But coming on late in the game, substitute Powell’s wonderful right footed strike gave Dons their just rewards.
Robinson said: “It was a wonder-goal from Powell. I had a go at him two minutes earlier for giving the ball away stupidly. But that’s Powelly! How many times have we seen that?!”
“It was an error though which gave them the ascendency. We didn’t want to give them a lift, and we don’t want to help them but we did. And we rode our luck in the early stages.
“It was a massive blow. You couldn’t see us, we do the same things on a regular basis. We looked edgy and nervous. We were lucky going in 1-0 down.
“We’ve deserved more than what we’ve got recently. Today we were equal, and it takes us out of the bottom three. It’s vital to accumulate everything we can.”
Before the game, both sides knew the loser would end up bottom of the league for two weeks as the international break approaches next weekend.
But after a run of six defeats, which has seen Dons plummet into the relegation zone, Robinson admitted he has been too frightened to look at the Championship table, though it makes for better reading now.
“I haven’t looked at the league table until this morning. I was too scared! I had a sneaky look, and it was important that I did. We can move forwards together now.
“In the first part of the season, we were flying then we had the international break and lost Birmingham. We haven’t got anything since. And now our luck is turning.
“Before the game, I wanted all three points. I only want to win football matches. But we deserved a point with a wonder-goal at the end. If we can perform like that, we have to reflect on it as a fair point.”