It wasn’t an ideal way to celebrate 300 games in charge for Karl Robinson as two defensive howlers cost his side a point against Nottingham Forest.
Nelson Oliveira and Ryan Mendes fired Forest 2-0 up after just 16 minutes as Dons’ defence simply didn’t turn up in the early stages, leaving Dons with a mountain to climb.
But after weathering the storm and finding their feet, Dons looked on top against the home side without really creating anything clear cut.
Ironically, a Nicky Maynard penalty miss seemed to spark Dons into life, and Josh Murphy’s goal 10 minutes before the end gave Dons a glimpse of a point, but despite their pressure it wasn’t to be.
For Dons, it means they drop to 21st in the Championship, picking up three points from three games when the performances have probably warranted more.
“Three games in a week, and in every one we have performed well,” said Robinson afterwards. “But we’ve lost two by one goal. And they’re things which have to change obviously. But we’ve got to keep marching on.
“We were all very critical after Brentford. When we’re bad I’ll tell you. It’s disappointing, but it gives us all belief.
“Our defending for the goals was abysmal. But if you eradicate that we were by far the better team today. We were on the front foot and dominated a top team littered with stars.
“Everything about the team, apart from the goals, was perfect. I think we defended well after the goals. We kept them on their heels and the back foot.
“If people want to talk about two components rather than the 20 positives then it’s a negative way of approaching it. If we start doing that, it will be difficult this year. We will look at the negatives because that’s what we do, but we dominated in the second half.
“Our game plan worked I think. I thought we were on top when they scored both goals. But things don’t drop for us. We missed a penalty too, and their keeper made two wonderful saves.”