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Match Reports

Report: Forest Green Rovers 0-2 MK Dons

MK Dons rise into the automatic promotion places thanks to 2-0 win…

6 April 2024

Match Reports

Report: Forest Green Rovers 0-2 MK Dons

MK Dons rise into the automatic promotion places thanks to 2-0 win…

6 April 2024

MK Dons climbed into third place in Sky Bet League Two after a clinical away performance at the New Lawn.

Max Dean pounced on a defensive error in the first half before keeping his cool one-on-one to put the Dons 1-0 up.

Five minutes into the second half Alex Gilbey finished off a great team move with a powerful finish to make the scoreline more comfortable.

Forest Green huffed and puffed but failed to create many chances of note, with MK Dons deserved winners in Gloucestershire. 

Mike Williamson made three changes to the side that drew at Notts County on Monday, with Michael Kelly, Dean Lewington and Jack Tucker coming in for Filip Marschall, Cameron Norman and Dan Kemp.


MK Dons had the first corner of the game after just three minutes, Jack Payne sent an inswinging delivery into the box which was headed back into the action by Daniel Harvie before Forest Green managed to clear their lines.

Jack Tucker was showing no signs of rustiness after his return from injury, the centre-back delivered a pinpoint ball into the Rovers area in the seventh minute for Max Dean to attack but Vicnente Reyes was able to claim.

The Dons were on top in the opening ten minutes and continued to put pressure on Forest Green’s backline, Kyran Lofthouse found joy on the right-hand side of the pitch and sent two balls into the box in quick succession but couldn't find a player in a blue shirt.

Not long afterwards Max Dean had his first shot of the afternoon, but the forward sent his first-time effort over the bar from the edge of the area.

Jordan Garrick had Forest Green’s first chance in the 14th minute, the forward picked the ball up after a mistake in midfield and ran at MK Dons' defence, but Dean Lewinton was able to stop him with a well-timed tackle and demonstration of his strength.

Not long afterwards Christain Doidge fashioned another chance for FGR on the edge of the area, but his poor touch meant Daniel Harvie was able to get ahead of him and Michael Kelly could come out to collect.

In the 27th minute, Stephen Wearne was brought down on the edge of the FGR area to give MK Dons a free-kick in a dangerous position, but Jack Payne’s effort was well blocked by the wall.

It was Forest Green who had the next chance of the game when Jordan Garrick got his shot away from a tight angle in the MK Dons area, but Jack Tucker was able to get across and turn it away.

With five minutes to go until halftime MK Dons took the lead! Forest Green made a horrendous mistake in midfield which MK Dons were quick to pounce on, Max Dean who had plenty of time to think about his shot as he bore down on goal. The young forward kept his cool though and brilliantly slotted home to Reyes’ left. 1-0.

Not long after the goal the Dons almost had another opportunity after a quick break, but Alex Gilbey was cynically brought down by Jordan Moore-Taylor who earned FGRs first yellow card of the match.

MK Dons went in 1-0 up at the break after a minute of first-half stoppage time.


MK Dons made an energetic start to the second half, Alex Gilbey immediately had a chance from the edge of the area and tested Vincente Reyes with a stinging shot which the keeper did well to palm away.

Not long afterwards the Dons doubled their lead! Lewis Bate fought tooth and nail to win the ball back in midfield before finding Kyran Lofthouse with an exceptional pass through Rovers' backline. The wing-back then took the ball to the byline before squaring his pass into the path of Alex Gilbey who empathically rifled home. 2-0. 

In the 56th minute Forest Green had their best chance of the game, the ball was played out to Emmanuel Osabede who shaped to shoot from the edge of the area after a quick break, but Jack Payne threw himself at the ball to make a heroic block.

The second goal seemed to take the wind out of Forest Green’s sails as the second half progressed, MK Dons continued to be dominant in midfield with Lewis Bate and Jack Payne dictating the pace of the match.

With 20 minutes to play Mike Williamson made a double change, with Max Dean and Jack Tucker being replaced by Ellis Harrison and Cameron Norman.

Not long afterwards Kyran Lofthouse and Jack Payne combined to create a scoring opportunity, the wing-back stabbed the ball through to the midfielder who beat his man to make a run into the box, but the number 11’s cross aiming for Ellis Harrison was well cleared. 

With around 15 minutes to play the Dons made another double chance, with Jack Payne and Stephen Wearne coming off for Ethan Robson and Emre Tezgel.

Kyran Lofthouse was again the architect of MK Dons’ next attack, the defender went on an incredible run beating three or four FGR players before then finding Alex Gilbey, the midfielder played in Ellis Harrison but Vincente Reyes did well to come out quickly and smother the ball.

In the 79th minute Steve Cotterill made his first changes of the match with a triple substitution for Forest Green Rovers.

MK Dons had a fantastic chance with five minutes to play, Kyran Lofthouse and Ellis Harrison exchanged quick passes in Forest Green’s area with Harrison pulling off an audacious backheel to play Lofthouse in, the wing-back then lifted the ball over a defender to find Alex Gilbey in the six-yard box, but Rovers just about managed to clear their lines.

In the final minute of the 90 Mike Williamson made his last change as Alex Gilbey came off for Dan Kemp.

MK Dons saw out five minutes of stoppage time to secure a valuable win at the New Lawn.


MK Dons: Kelly, Lewington, Tucker (Norman 70), O’Hora, Gilbey (C) (Kemp 89), Payne (Robson 75), Dean (Harrison 70), Harvie, Wearne (Tezgel 75), Lofthouse, Bate

Subs: Marschall, Williams

Goals: Dean 40, Gilbey 50

Yellow cards: 

Forest Green Rovers: Reyes, Inniss, McAllister (Dabo 79), McCann (Maddox 79), Doidge (Omotoye 89), Garrick, Moore-Taylor (C), Thompson (Jones 79), Robson, Keogh, Osadebe (Bunker 89)

Subs: Searle, Bernard


Yellow cards: Moore-Taylor 43, McCann 61

Referee: Andy Davies

Stadium: The New Lawn

Attendance: 2,507 (571) 

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