REPORT: AFC W'don 0-2 MK Dons: Dons' derby night delight
MK Dons scored twice in the first half to pick up their first win at the Cherry Red Records Stadium as they beat AFC Wimbledon 2-0 on Friday night.
Ryan Seager needed just seven minutes to open the scoring, firing home Osman Sow's cross, before Gboly Ariyibi doubled the lead on 26 minutes.
It was a nervy encounter for the visitors though as AFC poured forwards, but they would be denied by a brilliant performance in the second half from Lee Nicholls. He denied Lyle Taylor from close range before denying him brilliantly from the penalty spot just after the hour mark. And he ensured a clean sheet for Neilson's side late in the day too, keeping out Cody McDonald as Dons held on for the win, climbing to ninth in League 1 in the process.
Seager returned to the starting line-up after scoring late in the day to win the game against Rochdale as one of two changes to the side. Ouss Cisse, the man who played Seager in against Dale, was the other change as Ed Upson (hip injury) and Aidan Nesbitt missed out.
Having won it six days earlier against Rochdale, Seager took just seven minutes to find his scoring touch again to give the visitors the lead, but it was all down to Osman Sow's hard work.
Latching on to the ball down the left-hand side, Sow spun Barry Fuller to break into the area before cutting it across to Seager for a simple six-yard tap in.
It was the home side who would see most of the ball in the opening half an hour, but it would be Dons who would be celebrating again on 26 minutes. Far from an attractive, well-worked goal like the first, Sow and Seager were poking at the static ball in the centre, but given half a sight of goal, Ariyibi lashed it home to double the lead.
Andy Barcham was proving to be the thorn in Dons' side on the AFC left and was causing Callum Brittain some headaches with his trickery, but his final balls were lacking as the Dons defensive unit held firm. They were handed a huge let off two minutes before the break though when they lost sight of Deji Oshilaja at a free kick, but the AFC defender saw his header clatter against the bar.
Chasing the game, the home side were very much in the ascendency in the second period. Lyle Taylor who was so instrumental for them in the clash last season, twice had decent efforts, one which was brilliantly kept out by Nicholls.
The Dons keeper would be instrumental in keeping the score at 2-0 when AFC were given a penalty, somewhat harshly, after Scott Golbourne was adjudged to have handled in the area. Nicholls though guessed right, diving to his right to deny Taylor again from the spot.
The visitors could have wrapped it up with 20 minutes to go but for a fine save from Nicholls' opposite number George Long, keeping out substitute Robbie Muirhead after great work from Ariyibi on the left-hand side.
As the nervous energy cracked up inside the ground, there would be little in the way of goal-mouth action for either side, though Nicholls did brilliantly to deny Cody McDonald in stoppage time to ensure all three points for the visitors.
Referee: Mike Jones
AFC W'don: Long, Fuller, Oshilaja, Francomb, Robinson (Charles 81), Trotter, Hartigan, Parrett (Forrester 60), Appiah (McDonald 31), Taylor, Barcham
Subs not used: McDonnell, Abdou, Soares, Kaja
MK Dons: Nicholls, Brittain, Williams, Wootton, Golbourne, Tshibola (Ebanks-Landell 86), Cisse, Gilbey, Ariyibi, Seager (Agard 71), Sow (Muirhead 65)
Subs not used: Sietsma, Lewington, McGrandles, Nesbitt
Booked: Hartigan, Tshibola, Francomb, Fuller, Muirhead