Report: Brentford 2-0 Dons
Karl Robinson made one change for the clash at Griffin Park, recalling Carl Baker to the starting XI in place of Samir Carruthers.
Brentford settled the better of the two teams but the first opportunity fell to the Dons and Josh Murphy, who fired over from a tight angle after initially beating his man 10 minutes in.
That sparked the Dons into life and Dean Bowditch drew a save from David Button a minute later, latching on to a ball down the left, cutting in and driving goalwards.
The hosts hit back but David Martin gathered Sergi Canos’ cross following a smart move down the right from the Bees.
A foul on Nicky Maynard provided the Dons with an opportunity from a set-piece 20 yards out, however, Murphy curled wide after Baker had taken the free-kick quickly.
Dean Smith’s side took the lead on 20 minutes, Lasse Vibe superbly heading home Jake Bidwell’s cross from the left 10 yards out.
Once again on the counter, the hosts almost made it 2-0 three minutes when Alan Judge was freed down the left but Martin was off his line quickly to make a magnificent save.
Judge then hit the crossbar from a 25-yard free-kick and Konstantin Kerschbaumer saw an effort cleared off the line by Antony Kay as the home side pushed for a second.
Smith’s men continued to look a real threat and Canos became the second Brentford player in quick succession to hit the bar, this time from 15 yards on 34 minutes.
However, the Dons were almost level a minute later when Maynard saw a shot deflect narrowly wide of the left-hand post after the men from MK1 had kept a corner alive.
Both teams had goals ruled out for offside five minutes before the break – Vibe for Brentford and Maynard for the Dons, who then hit the woodwork themselves courtesy of a wind-affected delivery from Bowditch.
Robinson’s men were the first to threaten in the second half when Baker picked out Kyle McFadzean, who sent an effort goalwards but he couldn’t get enough on it to trouble Button.
The woodwork came to the Dons’ rescue for a third time on 50 minutes and denied Vibe once again in the process – the Danish international’s thumping 20-yard effort effort cannoning back off crossbar and bouncing away to safety.
Judge was presented with a golden opportunity for the hosts just before the hour mark but he somehow skied his close-range effort over the bar unmarked at the back post.
The midfielder made up for his miss on 71 minutes when his hopeful ball back into the box evaded everyone and found the bottom corner.
Maynard forced Button into a smart save from distance before substitute Sam Gallagher was stopped in his tracks as the Dons looked for a way back into the game.
Fellow sub Daniel Powell threatened late on when he received the ball on the edge of the box and drove goalwards but he was crowded out as he prepared to shoot.
MK Dons: Martin; Spence, Kay, McFadzean, Lewington (c); Poyet (Carruthers 73), Potter; Baker, Bowditch (Gallagher 66), Murphy (Powell 53); Maynard.
Unused subs: Cropper, Hodson, Benavente, Hall.
Attendance: 9, 682 (590 Dons fans).
Referee: Oliver Langford.