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Match Report


Posted Wed 12 Aug 09 at 00:13 AM


Swindon advance to the second round of the Carling Cup after a convincing victory over the continually injury-ravaged MK Dons.

Having been beaten 5-0 at Gillingham on the opening day, Swindon bounced back with a bang as they also succeeded in striking a psychological blow before they meet the Dons again in the league in four days time. Jon-Paul McGovern opened the scoring five minutes before the break - spotting Willy Gueret out of his ground and volleying home superbly after robbing Luke Howell.

But the Dons looked to have settled themselves when Jermaine Easter pulled them level after the break - slotting home from the penalty spot after Lewis Gobern had been cut down by Lescinel Jean-Francois in the area. It was only to be a glimmer of hope for the home side though as Billy Paynter fired home via the aid of a deflection just three minutes later and then helped himself to another after Gueret failed to hold onto Anthony McNamee's cross.

With the Dons pushing forward to save the game, the fourth duly arrived on 74 minutes as Lloyd Macklin took advantage of some space on the right, crossing to the far post where Paynter was only denied a hat-trick by David McCracken unfortunately diverting into his own net.

As it happened:
90+1mins - The first of three added minutes and Macklin goes down on the right edge of the Dons box after colliding with Powell. Marshall races onto the loose ball and into the box before firing through the six-yard box and out to safety.

90mins - Paynter calls it a day and makes his way to the touchline to be replaced by the diminutive Mark Marshall.

89mins - Gobern wins a free-kick out on the right flank, whipped in with dangerous pace and bend by Puncheon and Lucas has to push it wide of his far post as Easter and McCracken just fail to connect.

88mins - Macklin sets off on a brilliant run from the right flank, ghosting past Woodards before beating Powell on the edge of the box and only a brilliant, sliding block from McCracken prevents him picking his spot.

85mins - Change for Swindon, their first of the night, as McNamee makes his way to the touchline to be replaced by Callum Kennedy.

84mins - Doumbe breaks forward from right-back, moving inside before sliding a ball in behind for Easter, but it's just too heavy and Lucas races out to reach it first.

81mins - Dons win a free-kick just under 30 yards from the Swindon goal, tapped by Johnson to Puncheon and hit by the former, but it's a fair way over the bar. 79mins - Frustration from Easter, who has to be spoken too after conceding a free-kick for a foul on Greer as the pair contested a high ball. Plenty of frustrated men in white tonight.

77mins - Attendance of 4,812 inside stadiummk tonight, including 531 away fans.

74mins - GOAL! MK DONS 1 SWINDON TOWN 4 - DAVID McCRACKEN OG Dons in some danger of being blown away here as Swindon overload them in defence, switching the ball from left to right where Macklin chips a cross to the far post and the retreating McCracken deflects the ball past his own goalkeeper from close range under pressure from the hat-trick-hunting Paynter. 73mins - Dons make their final change as Chadwick comes on to replace Carrington. It's an attacking change, but one senses it might be too late.

71mins - GOAL! MK DONS 1 SWINDON TOWN 3 - BILLY PAYNTER That looks like it might be that as Swindon stretch their lead with 19 minutes to play. McNamee finds space on the right and clips a cross into the six-yard box which Gueret is stretching to reach. The Frenchman can't hold it as he falls to the ground and Paynter is on hand to stab in from barely a yard out.

69mins - Swindon seem to have taken their foot off the gas in the last few minutes - either that or the Dons are forcing them back. Easter is starting to stir in attack and Puncheon is starting to get on the ball.

66mins - More good stuff from Gobern out on the right, who shows great feet to escape two defenders before cutting a lovely low ball back into the box. Easter is arriving, but swings and misses from just inside the area. Gobern is looking sharper and sharper.

64mins - Howell and Puncheon combine well to work the ball out to Gobern on the right, and he seems to have the beating of a tired-looking Jean-Francois. The cross comes into the box, but the whistle goes for a trip by Puncheon on Greer as the cross goes over the pair of them.

62mins - It's the Dons back four that started on Saturday now, with Doumbe at right-back and Woodards switched to left-back. Puncheon has gone up top alongside Easter, but expect him to wander. 60mins - Here come the changes and it's Sol Davis to be replaced by Darren Powell. Bridges will make way for the mercurial Puncheon.

58mins - The introduction of Jason Puncheon could be imminent as he and Darren Powell receive instruction from Karl Robinson in the dugout. Paul Ince is standing in the technical area, seemingly unflustered, until another free-kick goes Swindon's way, which he greets with outstretched arms.

No sooner are the Dons level than they fall behind once more as Paynter restores the Robins' advantage. Amankwaah blocks a Johnson cross from the left and then reaches the loose ball before Davis to start a counter attack down the right. He drives inside McCracken before finding Paynter on the left corner of the D and the striker fires a left-footed shot that deflects off Doumbe and out of Gueret's reach inside the left post.

Easter brings the Dons level with the first Dons goal at stadiummk this season and it comes from the penalty spot. Won by Gobern, who positively keeps Jean-Francois's mis-cued header in play down the right flank before bursting inside the Swindon full-back and into the box. Jean-Francois sticks a leg out, Gobern trips over it and Easter does the rest, passing the ball firmly into the bottom-right-hand corner with his right foot.


47mins - Dons win a free-kick out on the left, it's whipped into the box by Johnson and Greer's header goes high into the night sky before Lucas gratefully makes the catch on the deadball line to his left of the goal.

Back underway at stadiummk and the Dons have some work to do if they're to stay in the Carling Cup. No changes for either side.

HALF-TIME: MK DONS 0 SWINDON TOWN 1 The visitors head for the break with a lead they have probably merited from the first 45 minutes. Swindon have been creative in possession and carried menace in attack - leading through a wonderful long-range effort from former Don Jon-Paul McGovern five minutes before half-time.

Still dogged by injury and without several of their first-choice personnel, the Dons have tried to get things going and went close on 11 minutes when Michael Bridges' cross from the left was headed back by Danny Woodards, only for Swindon 'keeper David Lucas to palm away from the waiting Jermaine Easter. But Swindon have had the pick of the chances, Michael Timlin seeing a free-kick well saved on 21 minutes before finding the side-netting with a clever lob shortly after.

McGovern then opened the scoring when he reached Willy Gueret's headed clearance before Luke Howell in midfield and placed a superb lob out of the Frenchman's reach from 35 yards. Still plenty to play for, and it has to be decided tonight, but the onus is now on the Dons to come out and create an opening.

45mins - Few players on the park could have produced a goal like that - McGovern is one of them. A terrific piece of vision and technique. Dons have yet to respond and are being out-passed a little at present. One minute to be added.

McGovern marks his first starting return to stadiummk with a goal to remember, a wonderful piece of opportunism. Gueret comes out of his ground to head a long ball over the top away from danger and it seems to falling safely into Howell's comfort zone. McGovern has other ideas though, jumping on Howell in a flash to rob the ball off him and, seeing Gueret hastily retreating, ;hitting a brilliant 35-yard half-volley on the stretch that the Frenchman just gets a hand to before it bounces into his net.

39mins - Trademark early cross from McGovern from the right flank and it's a decent one in towards Paynter just inside the box. The striker gets his head to it, but Gueret is well-placed and catches on the run.

37mins - Dons enjoying some possession down the left corner, but the cross isn't forthcoming. Carrington turns smartly away from Macklin before finding Davis on that side, but the full-back's clipped ball in behind for Easter is too long and runs out for a goal-kick.

32mins - Dons fans becoming frustrated with the officials as Gobern tumbles down the right under pressure from Jean-Francois. It's right in front of the assistant, who refuses to flag and the ball runs out for a throw-in. 30mins - Dons forced into some defending in the last few minutes as Swindon pass the ball well and look a threat from set-pieces. Paynter gets his foot to a cross from the left, looping it goalwards from around 12 yards, but Gueret is alive to it and catches well on the stretch.

25mins - Devilish corner from Johnson out on the left, whipped in at pace at a great height and McCracken is inches away from connecting.

23mins - Really unlucky from Timlin, who collects a knockdown from Macklin on the charge forward and tries a brilliantly-early effort from 25 yards that catches Gueret on his heels but skims the side-netting. Lovely idea.

21mins - Free-kick goes against Doumbe for a foul on Macklin just over 20 yards out. Timlin hits it, Gueret parries and McCracken reacts quicker than Paynter to clear the danger. Excellent anticipation from the Scot, not to mention a thumping effort from Timlin.

19mins - Bit of a reaction from Gobern, who is fouled by Timlin and then confronts the Swindon midfielder over some niggle on the ground. Referee has words with both.

17mins - Morrison goes down heavily after jumping for a header and sent off balance by Easter. The defender gets a free-kick, but isn't in need of treatment.

15mins - It's been a really lively start here at stadiummk. Swindon have brought an insurance policy in the shape of Douglas, who is patrolling in front of the back four, but ahead of that they have McGovern, Timlin and the pacy McNamee all looking to get up in support of Paynter and Macklin up top. Early signs have been promising in terms of entertainment.

13mins - The Dons have had to work hard in midfield in the opening exchanges, but Howell and Carrington are starting to have some joy and Bridges has started extremely brightly up ahead of them. Howell finds Gobern on the right, but McNamee tracks back well to play the ball off the Dons winger for a goal-kick.

11mins - Great stuff from Bridges down the left, who works some space before clipping a delightful ball to the far post where Woodards has bombed forward to connect with his head. The ball bounces across goal and Robins 'keeper David Lucas nudges the ball away from the waiting Easter in the nick of time.

7mins - Easter takes a tumble inside the penalty area on the right goal-line under the challenge of Greer, but only gets a corner. Scrap that, the assistant is signalling for a goal-kick. 4mins - Seems to have thrown Gueret's bearings a little as Macklin seizes on the Frenchman's hesitation on the right edge of the box and cuts past him. From a tight angle, Macklin cuts the ball back, but Howell is backtracking to intercept.

 3mins - Mild worry for Dons fans as goalkeeper Willy Gueret comes to collect on the right of his box and is caught a little late by Douglas. No intent, but Gueret stays down before popping back up to the relief of the Cowshed. With several out at present, the last thing the Dons need is another injury - especially to their imposing 'keeper.

MK DONS: Willy Gueret, Mathias Doumbe, David McCracken, Jermaine Easter, Jemal Johnson, Mark Carrington, Lewis Gobern, Danny Woodards, Sol Davis, Luke Howell, Michael Bridges.
SUBS: Jason Puncheon, Stuart Searle, Richie Partridge, Darren Powell, Luke Chadwick, Adam Chicksen, Martel Powell.

SWINDON TOWN: David Lucas, Jonathan Douglas, Gordon Greer, Jon-Paul McGovern, Michael Timlin, Anthony McNamee, Sean Morrison, Kevin Amankwaah, Lescinel Jean-Francois, Billy Paynter, Lloyd Macklin.
SUBS: Scott Cuthbert, Craig Easton, Callum Kennedy, Phil Smith, Mark Marshall, Nathan Thompson.

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