Karl Robinson cut a frustrated figure after his side failed to convert one point into three for the fourth consecutive league game against Preston on Saturday.
“I think we deserved the win,” said Robinson, who went on to declare that Dons should have also won their previous three games, which all ended in draws. “But for some unknown reason it’s just not happening.”
The Dons boss admitted his ‘frustration’ and noted that: “Sometimes in football you don’t get what you deserve, and we certainly haven’t had what we’ve deserved over the last four games.”
There is no denying that Dons has chances to beat Preston, and the manager was left exasperated by Ryan Lowe’s ‘gilt-edged’ chance to put the home side back in front just before half time.
But Robinson refused to be too hard on the striker, saying: “He thought he could have hit it on the full, but it sort of bobbled up.”
Despite his miss, the Dons boss included Lowe in what he termed ‘probably our strongest front-four’, alongside Daniel Powell, Dean Bowditch and Luke Chadwick.
Robinson was pleased to see that front-four get some minutes on the pitch together, and lauded the ‘tremendous pace, cleverness and creativity’ the quartet offer his side.
However, Dons have now gone eight League 1 games without a win, but Robinson was quick to defend his team.
He said: “I don’t think you can question the players’ effort today. We won’t stop, there are too many strong characters in the group. There’s been tremendous positivity around the camp. I’m so proud of them.”
Indeed, Robinson reserved his strongest criticism, not for his players, but the officials. The Dons boss thought his side were denied ‘two blatant penalties’, and lambasted the ‘ignorance’, ‘arrogance’ and ‘obnoxiousness’ of assistant referee Marc Wilson – a man who Robinson claimed ‘shouldn’t be an assistant referee’.
Robinson’s comments on the ‘very, very dubious decisions’ could land him in hot water with the authorities.
Away from the events of the game, Robinson was in buoyant mood, delighted to have secured the influential Chadwick for two more years, as well as hinting at further good news on the contract front on Monday. He also said that the departure of Gary MacKenzie was ‘done now so we’ve got to get on with it.’
The manager did stress, however, the ‘reality’ of the situation – namely that the football club have ‘not got the money that people think we have’.
Robinson also confirmed that Ryan Harley had ‘a stiff neck’, and so was likely to return to Brighton, and categorically stated that he was not looking to recruit any replacements.