Match Report


Sat 06 Apr 13

By Ben Blackmore

Paul Jones was the hero of the afternoon as he produced the save of the season to ensure Reds came away from Stadium MK with a point from their sixth draw in the last eight games.

The keeper denied Ryan Lowe from six yards out with a world-class save whilst ex-Reds' loanee Danny Powell missed a golden opportunity for the hosts just before the break.

Billy Clarke had perhaps Reds’ best chance of the afternoon, but his volley went over the bar and the Reds settled for a decent point after getting to grips with their hosts in the second half.

Richie Barker made three changes from the side who lost at Shrewsbury. Sergio Torres, Connor Essam and Mike Jones replaced the injured Matt Sparrow, Mark Connolly while Jamie Proctor dropped to the bench.

MK Dons came into the match still harbouring hopes of a late play-off push and the hosts thought they were ahead after just five minutes, Shaun Williams headed home a free-kick but he was flagged offside and the goal was disallowed.

Reds started slow and were nearly punished eight minutes later when Lowe turned on the ball before curling an effort just over the bar.

MK were looking the better side at this stage and Reds had Jones to thank after he produced the save of the season to deny Lowe an opener.

Jon Otsemobor progressed down on the right wing before delivering a cross that found Lowe at the back post and his effort had Jones seemingly beaten but he managed to somehow claw the ball away for a corner, showing tremendous reflexes.

It was a fantastic save that seemed to inspire some confidence at the other end. Clarke hit a dipping volley from 25 yards out that went over the crossbar before the striker followed up his effort with a left-footed shot that narrowly missed the corner after he had found space on the left side.

Reds looked the better side towards the end of the first half but just before the break Dons should have been ahead.

After seeing the save of the season Powell found himself with the award for miss of the season. He was just five yards out from goal after a cross from the left hand side but he somehow blazed over with the goal gaping.

Into the second 45 and Nicky Adams nearly had the Reds ahead two minutes after the break. The ball fell kindly for the winger and his half volley from a tight angle was just deflected wide of the post.

Both teams struggled to create chances, however Dons striker Lowe might have done better with a left-footed shot that he dragged wide of the mark after bringing the ball down well in the area.

Clarke tried his best to inject some pace and flair into the match when he picked the ball up 25 yards out and ran into the box before firing a shot that was straight at Ian McLoughlin.

Darren Potter had perhaps the best chance of the second 45 when he ran with the ball into the area but fluffed his effort wide when it looked easier to score.

Reds defended well throughout the afternoon and survived a late onslaught of corners including fantastic late blocks from Torres and Walsh to deny Dons a winner.

It was a good clean sheet and hard-earned point enjoyed by the 390 visiting fans in the crowd.

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