Edu Rubio’s side progressed into Round Two of the FA Youth Cup as they overcame their Long Eaton United counterparts 2-1 on Thursday evening.
The Young Dons had to come from behind after Jamie Robinson's own-goal gave the hosts the lead at the break before Dylan Asonganyi and James Holmes netted to set up a Second Round tie with Rochdale.
There was a number of FA Youth Cup debuts being made with first-year scholars Jamie Robinson, Jack Hourican-Harvey and Jamal Sule all being handed a start.
Elsewhere, Alfie Jones, Matthew Sorinola, Jenson Wright, Jack Davies, Jay Bird and Recoe Martin all took to the field from the off.
Having been involved in the Checkatrade Trophy earlier this season, Charlie Pattison captained Rubio’s squad with Dylan Asonganyi picking up some valuable minutes.
It was the home side who started the game in brightest with James Shaw almost putting Long Eaton United ahead with just six minutes on the clock – his shot would roll wide of Jones’ post.
Two minutes later, Niall Towie won a free-kick on the edge of the Dons’ box, he was unable to keep his strike down with the ball sailing over the bar.
Having taken their time to adapt to the surface, the Dons first chance of the came with 15-minutes on the clock via Asonganyi. It was a clever move from the visitors with Davies and Bird combing well before the latter freed Asonganyi. The bounce wasn’t kind to the striker with his shot going wide.
Shortly after, Jay Bird created an inch of space having cut inside two Long Eaton United defenders – his shot was saved by Marcus Coombs.
Bird was once again involved with the winger firing narrowly wide after a smart one-two with Wright.
Jones was once again called into action when the clock struck 30-minutes, he got down quickly to save from Shaw’s powerful low strike.
Captain Pattison was controlling proceedings in midfield and came close to opening the scoring when his ambitious effort was saved by Coombs.
The midfielder was once again involved when he poked through to Asonganyi who freed Bird – he subsequently cut onto his right before firing into the side netting.
With just one minute of normal time remaining in the first half, Long Eaton United found their way past an impressive Jones in the most unfortunate of circumstances for Rubio’s men. The Dons’ shot-stopper done so well to keep out Long Eaton’s powerful header from a corner only for the ball to bounce off Jamie Robinson and into the back of the net. 1-0.
Rubio’s half-time team talk certainly breathed life into his young side as a driving run from Asonganyi resulted in the striker being hacked down inside the box leaving the ref with no other choice than pointing to the spot.
It was Asonganyi who took on penalty-taking duties with his strike finding the bottom corner to level proceedings just three minutes into the second half. 1-1.
Shaw, who was a continuous bright spark for Long Eaton, looked to put the hosts back ahead but his effort from distance was saved by Jones.
Asonganyi then won MK Dons a free-kick just outside the box, he stood over the dead ball with his delivery inches away from the head pf Pattison.
Asonganyi then saw another chance fall his way when the goalscorer looked to lob Coombs from range – his cheeky attempt was blocked.
After an impressive counter-attack from the home side, Goodwin was found unmarked on the edge of the box – his shot took a deflection and was saved well by Jones.
Martin then got in behind the Long Eaton United defence before his driven cross was cleared at the feet of Asonganyi.
It was once again that man Asonganyi who caused the Long Eaton defence trouble, he firstly won a free-kick 30-yards from goal before his curling free-kick was clawed away by Coombs.
Two substitutes combined late on to win the game for Rubio's side as Rowley beat his marker before crossing for James Holmes. The winger met the cross perfectly before his right-footed strike found the back of the net with seconds remaining. 1-2.
Starting XI: Jones, Robinson, Sorinola, Davies, Hourican-Harvey (Brennan 46,) Sule, Martin (Holmes 84,) Pattison, Asonganyi, Wright (Rowley), Bird.
Unused Subs: Rose (GK), Ackom, Holmes.