Paul Tisdale viewed MK Dons’ ‘whole-hearted’ performance at Stevenage as the right response from last weekend’s defeat to Accrington Stanley.
Tisdale’s side bounced back from the 2-1 loss in Lancashire by seeing off Stevenage 3-0 in their opening Leasing.com Trophy clash.
Conor McGrandles opened the scoring for the Dons inside the opening 20 minutes before young striker Sam Nombe added a brace late in the second half.
“We were competitive and that's all I asked for after Saturday's result,” Tisdale said in his post-match press conference.
“We had a very poor weekend, and there are only so many sessions I can coach on a Monday, but the players responded. As a manager, I'll take that.
“We've had some average performances recently and we needed a wholehearted performance. It was more like a footballing performance I wanted to see.
“It’s a building block. We'll need a lot more moving forwards, but it's a good start. We needed to gain some confidence after being wishy-washy on Saturday.”
Nombe stole the show at the Lamex Stadium with his two second-half strikes and now leads the way at the top of the Dons’ scoring charts. The 20-year-old received received praise from his manager.
“Well done to Sam,” Tisdale said. “I'm delighted for him. He did really well, worked his socks off and typified the performance.”
Another positive for Tisdale was a first start for Brennan Dickenson, who missed most of pre-season due to injury. The summer signing completed 65 minutes, much to the delight of the Dons boss.
“It was his first start for us and it's his first hour for a long time - it was great to see him.”