MK Dons 2-1 Oldham - Dons are spot on to see off Oldham
Two penalties from Chuks Aneke and Kieran Agard guided MK Dons to a nervous 2-1 win over Oldham Athletic on Tuesday to stop their dismal recent run.
Heading into the game off the back of three consecutive defeats, Aneke's 14th minute penalty saw them lead before Agard doubled the lead midway through the second period.
A screamer from Tom Hamer barely a minute later though made for a nervous finale, but Dons had the better of the chances to make sure of it late in the day.
The win, their first since New Year's Day, keeps them in sixth but results elsewhere mean they are just three points from the automatic promotion spots.
After yet another disappointment at the weekend, going down 1-0 to Grimsby at Blundell Park, Paul Tisdale opted to make another four changes again to his side. Joe Walsh replaced injured Jordan Moore-Taylor, while Chuks Aneke and Conor McGrandles returned and Ryan Harley made his first start since August.
As the snow began to fall prior to kick off, Dons did their best to warm the fans in the opening stages with an all out attack on Oldham. The visitors barely had the ball in the opening 20 minutes, while Dons took the lead on 14 minutes courtesy of Chuks Aneke's penalty after Dean Lewington was downed by Christopher Missilou.
The goal though sparked Oldham into life, and the remainder of the half was not as one-way as it had threatened to be. Missilou almost made amends for his earlier misdemeanour by testing Lee Nicholls from range, while Tom Hamer saw his effort skid just wide of the mark.
After a poor start to the opening half, Oldham made a much better job of the second, with Urko Vera forcing a fine save from Nicholls, while Mohamad Sylla should have punished the keeper after a poor punch clear fell to the Oldham man, but he put his effort wide.
Caretaker boss Pete Wild made a double substitution just after the hour mark, but one of those chances made an immediate impact for all the wrong reasons. Jose Baxter was chasing Alex Gilbey into the box when his sliding challenge downed the Dons man, earning the home side their second penalty of the night. Kieran Agard took over the duties from Aneke, but the result was the same with Dons two goals to the good.
The lead would be reduced back to one though within two minutes as Hamer scored a wonderful volley from the edge of the box, finding the top corner, leaving Nicholls with no chance.
Given Dons' recent record, it left for a nervous final 23 minutes as Oldham suddenly sensed a point was on offer. Dons, left to play on the counter, could have put the game to bed when Gilbey went through on goal only to fire in a tame effort, while substitute David Wheeler slipped the bar with a header.
While the nerves around Stadium MK were jangling late on, Oldham rarely threatened Nicholls' goal in the closing stages as Dons ended their losing streak.
Referee: Antony Ciggins
MK Dons: Nicholls, Cargill, Martin, Walsh, Lewington, McGrandles, Harley (Wheeler 54), Gilbey, Watson, Aneke (Sow 72), Agard (Houghton 67)
Subs not used: Moore, Baudry, D'Ath, Brittain
Oldham Athletic: Iversen, Edmundson, Vera (O'Grady 62), Missilou, Lang (Dummigan 86), Stott, Branger-Engone, Mepomuceno, Maouche, Hamer, Sylla (Baxter 62)
Subs not used: De la Paz, Taylor, Benteke, Hunt