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Russ: Punished for 'horrible' start

MK Dons were beaten 2-1 by Accrington Stanley at the Wham Stadium...

6 December 2020

Russell Martin bemoaned another sloppy start as MK Dons fell to only their second defeat in eight games at the Wham Stadium.

The Dons were beaten 2-1 by Accrington Stanley on Saturday, with Dion Charles bagging a brace, either side of a stunning Carlton Morris goal, to earning the full share of the spoils for the home side.

Charles scored his first inside the opening 10 minutes of the game – another early goal conceded by Martin’s men, which left the boss feeling angry and disappointed in his post-match press conference.

“For the first 10 minutes we were horrible and I've said that too many times this season,” Martin told the media.

“We spoke before the game about how they'd come at us, on a tough pitch and with loads of energy. That's exactly how it turned out and we didn't do well enough with that. We found ourselves a goal down which has happened too much this season.

“After that, the response and the performance was really, really good. There were loads of positives and some great performances, especially from David [Kasumu] and Carlton.

“We drew level with an exceptional goal and then I felt there was going to be more from us. They looked defeated after that and I thought we'd go on and get a winner.

“We had a lot of shots on goal, double the amount they did theirs. We only had three shots against us on target and two went in in – again, that has been the case too many times.”

Martin added: “I'm really hurt to lose because we shouldn't lose that game. We've been the best team and I know I’ll get criticised for saying that but we were – we were so dominant.

“We just weren't good enough in the final third and we've ended up losing because of that, as well as because we’ve given the team a headstart again. When you don't do the basics and small details it will hurt you.”

Despite the defeat, MK Dons remain 17th in the Sky Bet League One table but they did fall five points adrift of the top half, having pulled themselves to within a win of mid-table with their victory over Charlton Athletic in midweek.

“We're so close to being a really good side at this level,” Martin said. “We haven't lost a lot recently, but we have to make sure we get back to winning ways next week.

“Back-to-back wins at this level are huge and it would have been huge today. We are consistent in performance but just inconsistent in results.

“The effort they've given us is immense and we deserved more today. We have to make sure this result is just a small setback.”

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