Unlike December, the Dons had a crammed schedule of eight games that were played throughout the January campaign. During this time, Liam Manning’s men claimed four victories over AFC Wimbledon, Portsmouth, Burton Albion, and Wycombe Wanderers.
A Stadium MK victory over AFC Wimbledon:
MK Dons hadn’t tasted victory at home for three matches, until facing AFC Wimbledon. Franco Ravizolli was introduced into Manning’s side, and the goalkeeper’s heroics rose to the occasion, as he kept a clean sheet throughout the 90 minutes played.
Matt O’Riley’s early goal decided the fixture, his unstoppable, left-footed strike, curled past Nikola Tzanev, which awarded the Dons with the lead. Soon after, Nesta Guinness-Walker was sent off after picking up a second yellow, following his late challenge on Theo Corbeanu.
Three points at Fratton Park:
MK Dons claimed back-to-back wins for the first time since September, Mo Eisa, and Theo Corbeanu’s goals allowed the Dons to lead the game, but the debut heroics from Jamie Cumming secured the win.
Eisa claimed the lead with a cool and composed finish, before Corbeanu’s emphatic strike which crashed in off the bar doubled the score line. Pompey had halved the deficit early in the second half, which resulted in the travelling team defending and holding on to their lead.
It was a strong defensive display from Liam Manning’s men, but Cumming was the hero who had saved the day. The number one was able prevent the opponents from equalising late in the game, with a strong left hand that denied a close-range header from reaching the back of his net. An incredible debut performance, which ensured the victory for the Dons.
Twine’s late winner:
Liam Manning’s men travelled to the Pirelli Stadium to take on Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink’s team, in a mission to seek redemption after their first league loss in six games.
Both teams fought toe-to-toe throughout the fixture, which allowed each team great chances at either end of the field, emphasised by the fact that each squad had hit the woodwork twice in their attempts to lead the game.
Jamie Cumming and Ben Garratt were on top form during the 90 minutes played, both of which, produced incredible saves to prevent their opponents from grabbing an advantage.
The match had seemed to end in a draw before Scott Twine scored a last-minute winner, to snatch three points off the Brewers.
The number nine pounced on Tom Hamer’s touch, which allowed him to claim the ball and quickly fire off a half-volleyed attempt towards goal. An unstoppable strike that sailed into the top-right corner, which left Garratt with no chance to stop the hit.
The team, as well as the away fans, broke out in celebration. After the attacking midfielder claimed victory, in the dying moments of the game.
A trip to Adams Park:
The Dons had faced Wycombe Wanderers twice, prior to this fixture. Matches which occurred in the league and the Papa John’s Trophy, both of which were hosted at Stadium MK.
Liam Manning’s men had prevailed against the Chairboys twice before, and they carried the momentum from their mid-week victory into the clash against Gareth Ainsworth’s team.
Twine scored an early goal, which would later be deemed as the decider for this match.
Theo Corbeanu picked up the ball in the middle of the field, before fearlessly running at Joe Jacobson, on the right side of Wycombe’s box. Corbeanu’s speed allowed him the space to strike the ball towards goal, which was kept out by David Stockdale.
Although Stockdale had prevented the initial shot, it wasn’t enough. Twine cemented himself on the scoresheet once again, which boosted his tally to 13. This victory allowed MK Dons to claim 14 points from their January campaign, which had boosted their total to 52 points within League One.