MK Dons cruised to victory in their first of two games on Saturday, beating local non-League side Newport Pagnell Town 4-0.
A penalty from Dele Alli, followed by goals from Daniel Powell, Dean Lewington and Under-18s striker Kabongo Tshimanga helped maintain the Dons’ unbeaten start to pre-season, as they edge closer to the start of the Football League campaign.
Fresh from their fitness camp in Ireland, Karl Robinson’s side visited the home of United Counties Premier Division side Newport Pagnell Town for their first friendly on home-soil this season.
The Dons named a strong starting XI which included the likes of Dean Lewington, Izale McLeod and Argentine trialist Santiago Aloi, who has been with the Club for the last two weeks.
Dons ‘keeper Ian McLoughlin was called upon in the game's first bit of action, with the Irishman having to be at full stretch to deny a low drive after just two minutes.
However, three minutes later, the Dons made the breakthrough with their fourth penalty in as many games.
After some good work from newly-turned pro Alli, Powell bore down on goal and was tripped up by a backtracking defender as he looked set to pull the trigger. Alli stepped up to take the spot-kick, making no mistake from 12-yards.
Robinson’s men almost found a second five minutes later after Alli, once again, had the Newport Pagnell defence on the back foot but after he found Jon Otsemobor 30-yards out, the full-back’s effort was well saved by the goalie.
The Dons’ eventually made it 2-0 on 15 minutes after the Newport defence failed to deal with a long ball forward by Darren Potter. The Swans centre-back, under pressure from Izale McLeod, could only find Powell with his clearing header and the Dons winger made him pay, taking a touch before rounding the ‘keeper and tapping home.
Soon after, apprentice Giorgio Rasulo went close to netting his first of pre-season with an off-target header before Newport Pagnell clipped the crossbar with a dangerous-looking free-kick.
A neat one-two between youngsters Alli and Rasulo almost led to a third Dons goal heading into half-time, but after the former drilled in a fierce cross, Powell failed to turn the ball home under pressure from former Don Sol Davis, who is now playing for the non-League Swans.
Just like in the first half, the hosts had the first chance of the second period and if not for some brave and commanding goalkeeping from McLoughlin, they could have pulled a goal back. A deep corner from the right looked destined to fall for a Swans player but McLoughlin came off his line well to punch clear of danger.
Alli, who had arguably been the best player on the pitch in the first half, almost provided the Dons with another goal just shy of the 50th minute but, after showing the left-back a clean set of heels, he failed to connect with an un-marked Rasulo at the far post.
Alli himself then went close to his second of the match but the England international's sweetly-struck volley was somehow turned behind by the keeper from point-blank range.
The third goal eventually arrived just prior to the hour mark courtesy of captain Lewington after the Dons were awarded a free-kick 25-yards from goal. Lewington stepped up to take the set-piece, with the left-back curling a sweet left-footed shot into the top right-hand corner much to the delight of the dozens of Dons supporters who had turned out.
The Dons then made a host of substitutions, with all the senior players bar Ian McLoughlin coming off to be replaced by seven first and second year scholars.
The youngsters didn’t disappoint Robinson and apprentice Kyran Wiltshire almost bagged himself a goal to remember minutes after coming on, but his off-balance effort was blocked by two defenders.
Kelvin Osei-Addo was the next Under-18s starlet to try his luck, cooly trapping a Rasulo corner at the far post before lifting his shot over the crossbar.
The young Dons defence, which had an average age of just over 16, dealt exceedingly well with the Newport Pagnell attack, hardly giving the hosts a sniff for the remainder of the match.
Rasulo, having played in the number 10 role the full game, almost capped of his afternoon with a sweet curling effort 18-yards out but the Swans ‘keeper was able to get a hand to it . Kabongo Tshimanga was there on the follow-up for the Dons, but again the Newport number 1 did well to keep the youngster at bay.
Tshimanga, though, capped off the afternoon by netting a fourth, following a sweet move from the Young Dons.
After left-back Gedeon Okito managed to latch onto Wiltshire’s cross-field ball, which looked for all the world to be heading out of play, the youngster found Tshimanga in space and the striker cooly placed the ball past the ‘keeper to complete the rout.
MK Dons (4-2-3-1): McLoughlin; Otsemobor (Daffern 65), Flanagan (Tingey 65), Hickford, Lewington (c) (Okito 65); Potter (Wiltshire 65), Aloi (Weston 65); Powell (Tshimanga 65), Rasulo, Alli; McLeod (Osei-Addo 65).
Subs not used: Burns (GK), Osae, Summerfield, Tilney, Forrester.
Alli (pen) 5, Powell 15, Lewington 58, Tshimanga 86Goals: