REPORT: Bristol Rovers 0-0 MK Dons: Honours even in Bristol
MK Dons had to settle for a point at the Memorial Stadium as they shared a 0-0 draw with Bristol Rovers on Saturday.
Both sides shared a half apiece - Dons looked the better in the first, while Rovers the second as both keepers were kept busy. Kelle Roos twice tipped George Baldock strikes over the top, while David Martin did brilliantly to deny Jermaine Easter's deflected effort late in the day.
Promising as the performance was though, Dons are still without a league win in six, and remain 21st.
Richie Barker welcomed back Joe Walsh from international duty at the heart of the defece, but was still without Darren Potter who has been struggling to shake off a dead leg picked up against Sheffield United last month. Dons were also without Nicky Maynard - the striker picked up a hamstring injury in training and missed the trip.
Dons made a comfortable start, and played the better stuff in the opening half hour. Kieran Agard inches wide as he got a touch on George Baldock's cross, before the full back then tested Kelle Roos with a fierce strike from the edge of the area which the former Rotherham keeper needed to be at full stretch to keep it out.
At the other end, former Dons striker Jermaine Easter's movement was causing the visitors most problems as he played across the width of the back four, while Ellis Harrison's header straight at David Martin was the best the home side had to show.
Dons remained the side in the ascendency but couldn't find a way in. Baldock again tested Roos with a left-footed effort from range, but once again saw his effort acrobatically tipped over by Roos as the sides went in level at the break.
The second half continued in a similar ilk, prompting Rovers boss Darrell Clarke into a triple substitution less than 10 minutes after the restart, introducing Matty Taylor, Rory Gaffney and Chris Lines to the action.
Dons though would be the ones creating the better chances, with Ryan Colclough's acrobatic overhead effort coming much closer than he expected, while Reeves saw another effort from range go just wide of the upright.
As Rovers' substitutes bedded in though, they began to turn the tide in their favour. Taylor, who scored a hat-trick in the reverse fixture last month, smashed one into Martin's chest and Easter sent one over the top as they began to get on top.
Their best chance though came in the last minute when Easter's strike from 10 yards flicked Joe Walsh on the way through, but was denied by a superb Martin save, getting his right hand to it.
In the end, a point was fair on both sides, with both keepers earning their money. Dons remain in the drop zone.
Referee: Nigel Miller
Attendance: 9,031 (291)
Bristol Rovers: Roos, Leadbitter, Brown, Lockyer, Clarke, Harrison (Gaffney 53), Easter, Sinclair, Boateng (Lines 53), Colkett (Taylor 53), Clarke-Salter
Subs not used: Puddy, Hartley, Montano, Bodin
MK Dons: Martin, Lewington, Walsh, Hendry, Baldock, Carruthers, Upson, Agard, Reeves (GB Williams 90), Colclough (GC Williams 77), Bowditch (Powell 90)
Subs not used: Nicholls, Tilney, Tshimanga
Booked: Baldock, Taylor, Agard