REPORT: MK Dons 3-0 Charlton: Dons cruise into Carabao Cup second round
MK Dons barely had to break a sweat on Tuesday night as they comfortably beat League 1 Charlton Athletic 3-0 at Stadium MK to put their name in the Carabao Cup second round hat.
Two goals in the opening 13 minutes gave Dons a comfortable cushion early on, with Dylan Asonganyi and Ryan Watson scoring their first goals for the club. An inspired Ouss Cisse was the standout for the home side, and he played a role in Dons' third with 20 minutes to go, an own goal teed up by Callum Brittain.
The draw for the second round takes place on Thursday at 7pm ahead of Sunderland's game against Sheffield Wednesday.
After their two opening league games, Paul Tisdale opted to rest some key personnel for the cup clash. Alex Gilbey, Dean Lewington, Kieran Agard and Jordan Moore-Taylor were dropped from the starting line-up, with Mitch Hancox and Baily Cargill making their debuts after summer moves, while David Kasumu returned to the side, and Saturday's winning goal-scorer Ouss Cisse made his first start of the campaign.
Charlton boss Lee Bowyer made nine changes to their side for the trip to Stadium MK, with nine academy products named in the starting line-up.
Having made his first start for the club on Saturday, it took Dylan Asonganyi just seven minutes to open his scoring account against Charlton as Dons took the lead. A long ball over the top looked to be bread-and-butter for Jo Cummings to deal with but his poor flick aimed back to his keeper was intercepted by the 17-year-old who blasted past Dillon Phillips with aplomb.
The lead was doubled six minutes later when a wonderful run and strike from Ryan Watson was bent into the opposite corner to Asonganyi's, leaving Phillips' helpless.
Watson nearly put the game to bed midway through the first half but for a vital block in the six-yard box from Anfernee Dijksteel denying him.
At the other end, Charlton barely threatened until they launched a quick counter, but Reeco Hackett-Fairchild's quick feet were outnumbered by Joe Walsh and George Williams closing him down and halting his progress before he could get a shot away.
It was all pretty smooth for Dons in the opening 45 minutes. Phillips wasn't especially tested, but the Addicks defence was by far the busier as Tisdale's side played a high tempo, especially in midfield led by Ouss Cisse. The Malian popped up all over the field, spraying passes left and right in an inspired half of football.
The second half saw a much more lively Charlton on the field, but they struggled to get through the solid Dons defence. Nicholls was called into action just once in the opening hour when Hacket-Fairchild looked to find the bottom corner, only to be denied by Nicholls' outstretched hand.
Cisse continued to be the lead runner for Dons in attack, while Watson saw another decent effort blocked, while Brittain fired into the side-netting after a deft flick from Cisse again.
And there was no surprise when he was involved in Dons' third goal. Holding up play to bring in David Kasumu who in turn threaded the ball to Brittain, whose fierce cross came off Phillips and bounce into his own net.
Nothing was falling Charlton's way on the night, even when Hackett-Fairchild's cross appeared to catch Nicholls off-guard but it clipped the bar on it's way through.
Referee: John Busby
MK Dons: Nicholls, Williams, Walsh, Cargill (Jackson 65), Hancox, Kasumu, Houghton (Moore-Taylor 46), Brittain (Muirhead 77), Watson, Cisse, Asonganyi
Subs not used: Sietsma, Agard, Nesbitt, Sole
Charlton Athletic: Phillips, Dijksteel (Yao 68), Marshall (Doughty 68), Morgan (Sarpong-Wiredu 68), Ajose, Mascoll, Maloney, Hackett-Fairchild, Blumberg, Cummings, Dempsey
Subs not used: Maynard-Brewer, Stevenson