A last-minute penalty from Giorgio Rasulo gave MK Dons Under-18s their first win of the season in a seven goal thriller against Leyton Orient at Woughton on the Green on Saturday morning.
The hosts made two changes from the side that drew 1-1 at Gillingham in their season opener last weekend with Jacob Daffern and Rasulo replacing Ben Grant and Brendan Galloway.
Rasulo was returning from international duty with England while Grant was missing with a toe injury which he sustained in training earlier in the week.
The Dons got off to the best possible start taking an early lead after just four minutes of the match courtesy of a penalty won and scored by Jon Osae.
The left back produced a great run into the box following a cross-field ball. He cut inside and was chopped down by an O’s player. He then confidently dispatched the penalty into the right side of the goal sending the visiting keeper the wrong way in the process.
The hosts, galvanised by the early goal, continued to dominate play with Will Summerfield creating a great chance on eight minutes, however the O’s keeper did well to smother his shot.
The Londoners were gradually forcing their way back into the game, and Dons keeper Charlie Burns was forced to be at his best making a good save with his legs to deny the O’s an equaliser.
The Dons doubled their lead on 26 minutes with the goal once again coming from a set piece. A free-kick from Rasulo from just outside the box clattered the angle of post and bar. The rebound was played cross-field to Rasulo who placed his shot from inside the area low into the left side of the net.
The visitors were still posing a threat, and gave themselves a foothold back into the match four minutes before the break. Dons’ Burns did well to save the initial effort, however the ball rebounded to Clyon Fareky who finished into the unguarded goal to make it 2-1.
The Dons finished the first half the strongest and continued the momentum into the second period as they extended their lead to 3-1 ten minutes into the second half.
The ball was played through to Kelvin Osei-Addo who ran confidently into the area with the ball, rounded the keeper and finished smartly to give Mike Dove’s side a two-goal cushion.
The visitors were not to be shaken off and they halved the deficit with 15 minutes remaining, as Clyon Fareky scored his second of the game with a well-placed shot which evaded Burns.
The end-to-end nature of the game continued with both sides creating plenty of opportunities. It was the visitors who made one of their chances count with just five minutes to go as substitute Freddie Monyir curled a shot into the left corner from the edge of the area to make it 3-3.
The Dons looked the most likely to come up with the potentially decisive goal, and in the sixth minute of added time it came as Rasulo ran into the area and was chopped down by an O’s player winning the hosts their second penalty of the game.
Rasulo took responsibility and dispatched the penalty high into the left side of the net to ensure the Dons came out on the right side of the score line in yet another seven goal thriller between these two sides.
After the match, Director of Youth Dove said: “It is an excellent result for us. We started brightly and were full of confidence from last week’s game. We had most of the possession and lots of play in the final third which was very encouraging. That is something we have been working on so it was really pleasing to see the extra creativity and positivity in attack.
“I think when we went 2-0 up in the first half we got a bit complacent and instead of pushing on we dropped off. We were missing a few of the more experienced players today and it perhaps showed a bit at times.
“Overall, it was great to get a win in our first home game. It will do the boys some good and it means there is a feel-good mood around the place.”
Midfielder Will Summerfield, who has been with the club since the age of eight, added: “As a squad we have got back into the swing of things pretty quickly following pre-season and so it was good to get the win today.”
MK Dons (4-2-1-3): Burns (c): Osae, Wiltshire, Tingey, Okito: Daffern, Weston: Summerfield (Vaughan 84): Tilney (Tshimanga 66), Osei-Addo, Rasulo.
Subs not used: Taylor, Grant.
Goals: Osae 4 (pen), Rasulo 27, 90+6 (pen), Osei-Addo 56