Ben Tilney, Oran Jackson and Connor Furlong all played 90 minutes in the match at St. James Park, as did striker Kabongo Tshimanga, who bagged two first-half goals.
Despite Tshimanga’s brace, the young Dons weren’t able to come out on top, with Brackley coming out on top 5-2 defeat - three of their goals coming after the break.
The Dons made a positive start with Tshimanga having a shot blocked after just 60 seconds. Connor Furlong followed up on the loose ball but saw his effort tipped wide by Brackley keeper Alex Connell.
Tshimanga, back from his loan spell in Iceland, had a second chance on goal just six minutes later and this time he found the net - sliding home from close-range after Ben Tilney had slid the ball across goal. 0-1.
The goal was nothing less than the Dons’ young side deserved for their positive start and they almost added a second when Furlong created room for a shot on the edge of the D, however the first-year pro’s effort was deflected wide.
A second goal then arrived in the 28th minute when the lively Tshimanga raced onto Furlong’s cutback through-ball and sent a fierce right-footed effort across the goalkeeper, into the far corner of the net. 0-2.
The Dons’ two-goal advantage was short-lived as just two minutes later Brackley pulled one back from the penalty spot following a foul on James Armson by Andrew Osei-Bonsu. 1-2.
Brackley then reduced the deficit entirely six minutes before half-time when Lee Ndlovu tapped in from close range after Armson’s low cross made its way into the six-yard box. 2-2.
Robinson’s men had a chance to restore their lead before the interval through Tilney but after latching onto a loose ball in the box, the left-back couldn’t keep his half-volley on target.
After the break, the young Dons conceded a third goal when one of the three starting trialists turned a cross from the right past Burns. 3-2.
Brackley began to turn up the pressure on the Dons’ backline and soon after their third goal they doubled their advantage through substitute Steve Diggin’s close-range finish. 4-2.
Robinson’s side could have had a chance to hit back almost instantly but appeals for a penalty, following Thomas-Asante’s tumble in the box, were waved away by the referee.
The Saints then made it 5-2 through Diggin’s second goal of the game - a harsh scoreline given how hard the Dons’ young side worked all evening.
Starting XI: Burns (Trialist 63); Kasumu, Trialist (Rasulo 63), Jackson, Tilney; Osei-Bonsu, Trialist; Furlong, Trialist, Thomas-Asante; Tshimanga.
Subs not used: None.
Goals: Tshimanga (7, 28)