'This is the start of my season' says Maynard
It may have been his 100th career goal, but Nicky Maynard's strike in the 3-2 win over Swindon has more significance because it was his first of the season.
Nineteen games have passed since Maynard's last goal, coming in an otherwise disappointing 2-1 defeat in the season finale against Nottingham Forest back in May.
But while the have fans lost patience, regained it and then felt sympathy for the striker, his goal in the 53rd minute against Swindon on Friday night couldn't have been any better - marking his century while getting the monkey off his back at last.
REPORT: MK Dons 3-2 Swindon: Maynard breaks his duck in Dons victory"It wasn’t until we were a few games into the season until I realised I was on 99, so people began to say it was a hoodoo of 100 goals!" said Maynard. "I’ve never let it affect me – it affected others, and played on their minds more than it did mine. I’ve got the goal now, and it’ll stop people talking and hopefully I can go on a little scoring run. Hopefully this is the start of my season.
"It has been a frustrating time but I think my performances have been good. I’ve kept plugging away but I’ve not had the rub of the green. But I’ve kept belief in myself and whenever I’ve been out there, I’ve believed I was going to score.
"I don’t want to be going another 19 games without another goal! If I’m selected, I want to go to Chesterfield and get more than one goal.
"Thankfully, I’ve got number 100 and hopefully there’s many more."
Maynard's struggles in front of goal were stark contrast to the brace bagged by fellow forward Kieran Agard on the night - two poacher's goals, the first coming from Maynard's shot as it rebounded off the bar, while the second saw him divert a wayward Chuks Aneke shot into the net.
But far from looking on longingly for a chance of that ease to fall to him, Maynard said he was delighted for his striker partner to be on the score sheet alongside him.
He said: "I was pleased for him – obvious I want as many goals as possible but at the same time, we want to win the game, first and foremost. My shot hit the bar for Kieran to head in, but you’ve got to be in the right place at the right time.
"Every time I had the ball, I was trying to shoot on sight, but the keeper made three really good saves, while Kieran got two tap-ins! I did almost think ‘maybe it’s not my day again’ but I kept plugging away and I think I had six or seven shots tonight, and they were all on target.
"But if I don’t shoot, I’m not going to score, so the more I shoot, the better chance I have of scoring.
"If I’m not scoring, I have to do something else for the team. The minimum requirement is to work your socks off, and as long as I;’m doing that, my chances will come but it’s down to me to take them. The manager believes in me, he has a lot of faith in me and I want to repay that faith."