MK Dons moved back into the automatic promotion places in Sky Bet League Two courtesy of a professional 2-0 victory over Yeovil Town at Stadium MK.
Ryan Harley put the Dons ahead with his second goal of the campaign before Chuks Aneke doubled the lead late in the second half with a terrific solo goal.
The result lifts Paul Tisdale’s men into third in the Sky Bet League Two and within two points of second-place Bury.
Boss Tisdale made two changes to his starting XI with Joe Walsh and Ryan Harley replacing Baily Cargill and Mathieu Baudry - the former returning from a short spell on the sidelines.
His side were the first to threaten the scoreline, inside the opening minute. Kieran Agard raced onto a long ball forward but saw his tame right-footed shot saved by Nathan Baxter. Shortly after, Walsh found himself inside the Yeovil penalty area but his low cross was intercepted by a Glovers defender on its way to Agard.
Yeovil then registered their first shot on target - a header from Gary Warren which was saved well by Lee Nicholls. MK Dons broke forward from Nicholls’ quick throw but Alex Gilbey was dispossessed on the edge of the area.
Nicholls kept out another header on eight minutes, this time from Francois Zoko. The Dons then saw a Dean Lewington strike deflect wide moments later from a free-kick award for a foul on Gilbey.
That left Gilbey with a noticeable limp, which would force him off the field early on. Before that, though, he would watch on as Ryan Harley put MK Dons ahead with his second goal of the campaign. Lewington’s free-kick wasn’t dealt with by the visitors and the ball ran out to Harley, who sent neatly rolled home a first-time effort into the bottom right corner. 1-0.
Before the re-start, Gilbey was replaced by Conor McGrandles - a straight swap which saw the Scotsman slot in, in central midfield.
Not looking to let the loss of Gilbey affect them, MK Dons went in search of a second goal. Jake Hesketh and Harley each tried their luck from range with fiercely-struck volleys but both saw their attempts blocked.
On 22 minutes, Hesketh dinked a ball over the top of the Yeovil defence for Agard but Baxter was able to gobble up for the Glovers. At the other end of the pitch, Alex Dobre sent in a cross for Zoko, who was quickly dispossessed by Walsh before he could think about shooting.
Harley fired a low shot in on the half-hour mark, in an attempt to double both his and the Dons’ tally but was denied by Baxter. Credit to Russell Martin in the build-up for his excellent cross-field pass.
Yeovil forced a period of pressure shortly afterwards but the Dons were able to keep them at bay. Tisdale’s side then went close to a second but a defender just got to Agard’s low cross ahead of Hesketh, who would have had a simple finish.
With four minutes remaining the half, Zoko had a glorious opportunity to draw his side level but was denied by a strong save from Nicholls, diving down to his left.
After that, the Dons saw penalty appeals waved away by referee Andy Woolmer who, in fact, booked Hesketh for simulation. That was the final action of the first half.
Tisdale’s men emerged from the break with a second change to the line-up - Chuks Aneke on in place of Wheeler.
They were denied what would have been a certain second goal by a terrific block from Carl Dickinson on McGrandles - the Scot looked set to tuck away from Hesketh’s neat pass until the defender’s tackle.
Houghton followed up with a left-footed shot which he sent high and wide from 25-yards out. He then put in a defensive shift to Matt Worthington’s effort troubling Nicholls.
McGrandles did the same just a minute later and MK Dons dealt with the resulting corner. They then broke forward with Hesketh, whose cutback was met by Agard, who saw a right-footed shot deflect wide of the left upright. Hesketh fired wide from the corner.
On 54 minutes, Aneke teed up Hesketh inside the area but he was quickly closed down and his shot was blocked. Brittain then delivered a low cross which was stabbed away in front of Agard.
Stadium MK was then breathing a huge sigh of relief as Zoko missed a fantastic chance to equalise. He was found well by teammate Dobre but, unmarked, he failed to convert from close range.
The Glovers kept their foot on the pedal and made two attacking substitutions - one of which saw former Dons striker Ryan Seager enter the contest. Seager spent time on loan at Stadium MK during the 2016/17 season.
Shortly after the change, the Dons were awarded a free-kick for a foul on Hesketh. Lewington took the set piece but saw his curling effort saved by Baxter.
Yeovil continued to push forward in search of a leveller even at the expense of leaving space for MK Dons to counter into.
With 20 minutes to play, Tisdale made his third and final change, introducing Ouss Cisse in place of Brittain. Moments after the change, Seager dragged a right-footed shot wide from just inside the penalty area.
Aneke, looking to put the game beyond doubt, fired wide from 25 yards after doing well to shrug off the challenge of Bevis Mugabi. He had another opportunity on 73 minutes but blasted over from a tight angle.
You had the feeling he wouldn’t miss a third opportunity and he didn’t. Collecting the ball on the right-hand flank, Aneke drove across the pitch and into the penalty area, navigating his way past a handful of Yeovil defenders before sending a low shot under Baxter and into the net. 2-0.
Aneke tried his luck again but this time saw a Yeovil defender get in his way at the near post. He nor his teammates were able to add to the score but, crucially, neither did Yeovil. 2-0 the final score.
Starting XI: Nicholls; Martin, Houghton, Walsh; Brittain (Cisse 71), Gilbey (McGrandles 15), Harley, Lewington (c); Hesketh; Wheeler (Aneke 46), Agard.
Unused subs: Moore, Watson, D’Ath, Simpson.
Goals: Harley (14), Aneke (82)
Booked: Wheeler, Booked
Referee: A Woolmer
Attendance: 7,593 (345 away)