Neilson wants more from Ariyibi after Rochdale brace

Robbie Neilson wants to see more from Gboly Ariyibi
Robbie Neilson wants to see more from Gboly Ariyibi

Gboly Ariyibi still has a lot to improve despite scoring twice in the 3-2 win over Rochdale, according to Dons boss Robbie Neilson.

Ariyibi scored his second and third goals of the season in the first half at Stadium MK, as Dons came from behind to cancel out Brad Inman's opener, and then take the lead before being pegged back by Matt Done just before half time.

Robbie Neilson

Robbie Neilson

Ryan Seager netted five minutes from time to secure all three points for the home side, but it was Ariyibi's performance that stole the show for the home fans.

Robbie Neilson though wants to see more from his winger, on-loan from Nottingham Forest for the season, and believes he has to do more out of possession as well as what he does with the ball.

"He has moments in him but there's a long way to go out of possession," said the manager. "In possession, he has fantastic ability at this level.

"It was an entertaining game. Both sides played well and played some entertaining football. I think if we'd have scored another goal, we would have been comfortable but Ryan Seager came on at the end and got us the three points.

Osman Sow played for 90 minutes for the first time for MK Dons

Osman Sow played for 90 minutes for the first time for MK Dons

"I thought in the first half, for a period, we were very dominant, but we gave away the goals. In the second half we started well but didn't get the goal. But we take three points and move on to a massive game on Friday (away at AFC Wimbledon)."

Neilson was highly critical of his defence after Tuesday night's defeat to Peterborough, singling out George Williams and Scott Wootton. And after eight minutes, the pair were split by Rochdale to allow Inman to score the opener. But even after the victory, Neilson felt the pair could have done better to keep Rochdale at bay.

He said: "We matched the physicality of Steven Davies and Jordan Slew, but the aim of the defence is to stop goals going in, and we conceded two today, and I think they could have been avoided.

"Scott and George responded well from the other night, as I expected them to because they're too good characters and two strong men."

Neilson did heap praise on striker Osman Sow though. The Swede played his first 90 minutes for the club since signing in August, and was a workhorse throughout despite coming out of the game without a goal to his name.

Neilson added: "It was a big ask for Osman, and I wanted to take him off but it didn't quite transpire like that. Ed's injury flared up a bit and I wanted to go two up front. He'll be stiff tomorrow, but it gives him more time under his belt.

"He will be a top striker at this level. He has fantastic ability and pace, but also he's a big lad and can deal with the physicality of it. As he gets fitter and stronger, and as we build that relationship with him, he'll certainly come on."