Report: AFC Wimbledon 2-0 MK Dons
Second-half goals from Jake Reeves and Lyle Taylor proved the difference as the men from MK1 were unable to record a double over their rivals.
Robbie Neilson named the same 18 but made two changes to the starting XI – Darren Potter and Kieran Agard in for Ben Reeves and Nicky Maynard.
With all that surrounded the fixture, there was no surprise there was an intense atmosphere from the first whistle at the Cherry Red Records Stadium.
That also meant that it took a little while for the fixture to settle into any sort of rhythm, however there was an opening at either end - David Martin punched under pressure before Robbie Muirhead’s cross was cut out in front of the lurking Agard.
Jake Reeves fired harmlessly over the top for the hosts on 12 minutes before Joe Walsh was in the right place at the right time to block Lyle Taylor’s effort from 15 yards.
The Dons hit back with a decent spell of possession which led to a chance for Muirhead who, after cutting inside, shot off target from 25 yards - better signs for Neilson’s men though.
After weathering an early storm, more good football from the men from MK1 created a chance for Harvey Barnes on 28 minutes but he superbly denied by James Shea – Muirhead couldn’t quite reach the rebound as the Dons went very close.
With 10 minutes of the first half remaining, Agard saw a shot turned behind for a Dons corner following some good build-up play before Sean Kelly dangerously headed a free-kick across his own 18-yard box.
The first chance of the second half fell to the hosts and Taylor, who forced Martin into a smart save at his near post from a tight angle – the resulting corner saw Jon Meades put an effort wide of the left-hand post.
George Williams then blocked an effort from Andy Barcham while, at the other end, a quick break ended with Agard directing a header over the top from Ben Tilney’s cross.
The hosts went ahead just after the hour mark when Jake Reeves fired home from close range after Barcham had directed a hopeful Taylor cross into the midfielder’s path.
Out of nothing, Taylor made it 2-0 on 69 minutes when he made space for himself down the right before driving a shot across Martin and into the far corner.
The Dons came extremely close to reducing the arrears almost immediately but Shea superbly kept out Agard’s close-range effort following good work by Barnes.
Shea was again called into action shortly afterwards to save Ed Upson’s long-range effort before Stuart O’Keefe shot off target as the men from MK1 responded well.
A Barnes effort then deflected wide before substitute Nicky Maynard sent a speculative effort wide as the Dons continued to try and look for a way back into the game, but ultimately they were unable to and fell to defeat.
Starting XI: Martin; Williams, Downing, Walsh; Potter; O’Keefe, Upson (Maynard 81), Barnes, Tilney; Muirhead (Reeves 60), Agard.
Unused subs: Nicholls, Brittain, Powell, Bowditch, Ngombo.
Booking: Upson, Williams, O’Keefe.