REPORT: Blackpool 1-0 MK Dons: Early goal spells second defeat for Dons
Sean Longstaff scored the only goal of the game after just five minutes as MK Dons lost their second game of the season on Saturday, going down 1-0 to Blackpool.
Once again struggling to make chances, Dons were fortuitous not to be out of it by half time, with Bright Osayi-Samuel and Viv Solomon-Otabor both squandering good chances for the home side, while keeper Lee Nicholls once again put in a show-stopping performance to keep the visitors in with a shout.
The result, their second defeat in as many league games at the start of the season, sees Dons without a point in League 1.
After playing extra time against Forest Green Rovers on Tuesday night, Robbie Neilson made three changes to the side, with Scott Wootton, Kieran Agard and Dean Lewington in at the expense of Paul Downing, Callum Brittain and Ryan Seager.
While Blackpool's troubles off the pitch have seen their attendances plummet in recent years, those who were there supporting their side saw the Seasiders burst out of the box and take a deserved lead after just five minutes. Left totally unmarked as Dons failed to clear a corner, Sean Longstaff picked up Viv Solomon-Otabor's ball inside before his composed, low drive beat Lee Nicholls.
While the home side were quick to get going, the visitors made a slow start to the game and looked vulnerable for much of the opening half hour. Possession was often wasted, and without a recognisable 'number 10' to support Muirhead, they looked toothless, though Ed Upson stung the palms of Ryan Allsop in Dons' best chance of the half.
Being caught on the counter attack was Dons' downfall against Wigan and they were almost caught out again at Blackpool, this time from their own corner. Able to break too easily, Osayi-Samuel opted to pick a pass when he got to the penalty area, rather than going it alone to test Nicholls. But his pass to Mark Cullen was a poor one, allowing Dean Lewington to get back into position and block the effort away.
With 15 minutes to go though, Dons began to find their feet. While Upson's earlier effort remained their best, Ethan Ebanks-Landell headed just wide but failed to test Allsop.
Having survived an earlier scare from Solomon-Otabor, the same man should have doubled their lead when he was given a clean-sight of goal on the stroke of half time, but fizzed his effort wide.
It was a similar story in the second half as once again, Dons failed to really create much of a threat. In fact, it was only the saves of Lee Nicholls who kept Dons in the game. An acrobatic stop denied Jimmy Ryan before a fantastic double-save kept out Bright Osayi-Samuel as Blackpool could have been home and hosed.
While there were brief glimmers of Dons clicking into gear, it was too easy for Blackpool to see out the second half. Allsop's only involvement was to keep out an Agard effort from range, but otherwise looked comfortable.
Dons were met with boos at the full time whistle and still seek their first points of the season.
Referee: Sebastian Stockbridge
Attendance: 3,412 (567)
Blackpool: Allsop, Robertson, Cullen (Gnanduillet 72), Anderton, Ryan, Longstaff (Hartley 89), Tilt, Solomon-Otabor, Turton, Osai-Samuel (Delfouneso 81), Daniel
Subs not used: Williams, Taylor, Aimson, Clayton
MK Dons: Nicholls, Williams, Ebanks-Landell, Wootton, Lewington, Upson (Seager 59), Cisse, Tshibola, Agard, Ariyibi, Muirhead (Nombe 72)
Subs not used: Sietsma, Walsh, McGrandles, Brittain, Thomas-Asante