Karl Robinson felt David Martin put in his finest performance of the season as he kept Cardiff City at bay in Saturday’s 0-0 draw.
The Dons keeper made several key saves from Stuart O’Keefe, Antony Pilkington and Scott Malone to keep the Bluebirds out as Dons held on for a vital point away from home.
“I pay him to make saves!” said Robinson afterwards. “He was outstanding, not just his saves, but his all-round game. He dominated in the air, he came and took the pressure off us, his decision making was excellent. His kicking was good too.
“It’s probably the best I’ve seen him play this season.
“The goalkeeper is a platform for all successes, and hopefully it’ll continue.”
The game, played in soaking conditions, almost didn’t go ahead. Heavy rain in the Welsh capital battered the pitch at the Cardiff City Stadium, prompting the club to borrow a sponger from Glamorgan Cricket Club in a bid to make the pitch safer for the players.
And while the game was short on goals and cutting-edge quality, Robinson was pleased it went ahead.
He said: “We fought tooth and nail to get this game on and Glamorgan came to our rescue. There were thousands of litres that came off the pitch. I told the referee the pitch was playable and we were going off a weather forecast.
“We can be too soft sometimes, but if we called it off, we’d all be disappointed. We don’t want to come here on a Tuesday night, we know how hard that would have been. I was striving to get the game on.
“I thought the first half was very even, except for the last five minutes and the opening 20 minutes of the second half where Cardiff dominated. I thought they were outstanding. We found it difficult to cope with them. We rode our luck a bit, but we had to. But we grew into the game and that’s pleasing for me.
“Defensively, we looked really good. Our last ditch defending, ability to rotate and fill spaces in the box was very good. Kyle McFadzean and Joe Walsh looked really strong, and this was George Baldock’s first game in the Championship, so I’m really pleased with him.”