Rovers stay second in the League One table after a goalless draw at Keepmoat Stadium.
DONCASTER ROVERS 0 Milton Keynes Dons 0
Referee – Mr David Webb
Attendance – 6,423 (180 visitors)
A cold, frosty evening saw MK Dons visit the Keepmoat Stadium for the first time. The last time these two met was at Belle Vue in August 2005. The Rovers made three changes, all in midfield, from Saturday. Martin Woods returned after injury, Andy Griffin and James Husband all came in for Paul Keegan, injured leg, James Harper, dropped to the bench, and Chris Brown, injured knee. The Dons made two changes, Luke Chadwick and Izale McLeod coming in for Chris Lines and Alan Smith, who both drop to the bench. The Rovers defended the South Stand end in the first half.
Rovers kicked off and the early minutes were spent in the visitors’ half before the game settled into a midfield battle. The first sight of goal came in the 12th minute when the Dons got down their right for Powell to get in a strike at goal but it was blocked and came out to McLeod, who fired low through a crowd of players but past a post. Another period of indeterminate play followed then, in the 22nd minute, a cross from Cotterill on the Rovers right was headed out of the visitors’ defence to Griffin, 25yards out, but his fierce drive was just past the post. Three minutes later and McLeod collected a loose ball on the Dons left and from the angle of the area placed the ball wide of the far post. Potter then followed suit from near the same spot and a corner for the Dons followed shortly after. Past the half hour and the Rovers won a corner but nothing came of it. Then a Rovers attack broke down, with the ball coming out of the Dons defence to Powell on the halfway line to give a 2 on 2 situation against McCombe and Jones. The ball was played out to McLeod, on the Dons left, but a last ditch tackle from Jones stopped him at the expense of a corner. In the 43rd minute, another corner to the Dons was headed over the bar by Otsemobor. At the other end a low cross from Coppinger bobbled about in the area before reaching Paynter but he blasted well over the bar from about 12yards. In added time Husband received on the Rovers left n acres of space but Otsemobor got across to block his shot.
Half Time – Doncaster Rovers 0 Milton Keynes Dons 0
The Rovers made a substitution at the start of the second half, Harper coming on for Griffin, who had taken a knock in the first half. Four minutes in and Cotterill fed Quinn on the overlap. His cross was met by Coppinger but under a heavy challenge he put the ball high and wide. At the other end Powell received on the Dons right but his shot from the edge of the area was deflected for a corner. Minutes later a cross from the Rovers left by Coppinger was just too high for Paynter. Past the hour and the play was scrappy in the extreme, with very little football played but the Rovers were doing most of the attacking, with the Dons playing on the break. A couple of corners to the Dons either side of the 70th minute came to nothing and a thirty yarder from Bowditch went well over the bar in the 79th minute. All the Rovers attacks, of which there were many, were breaking down on the Dons backline so that Martin didn’t have a save to make. Gary Woods too was relatively unemployed. However, the Rovers kept going but in the 86th minute when another attack broke down the ball was played out to McLeod, who went on a long run but from the edge of the Rovers penalty area he blasted the ball high and wide. The Rovers tried hard to the end but a point was all they collected to put them in front of Tranmere Rovers but now having played the same number of games.
Result – Doncaster Rovers 0 Milton Keynes Dons 0
Teams – ROVERS – Gary Woods; Paul Quinn, Jamie McCombe, Rob Jones ©, Tommy Spurr; David Cotterill, Andy Griffin, Martin Woods, James Husband; James Coppinger, Billy Paynter
Subs used – James Harper for Griffin 46 mins; Emile Sinclair for Paynter 70 mins;
Subs not used – Shelton Martis, Liam Wakefield, Lee Fowler, Kyle Bennett, Jon Maxted gk
Cautions – M Woods 36 mins;
MK Dons – David, Martin; Jon Otsemobor, Gary MacKenzie, Shaun Williams, Dean Lewington ©; Luke Chadwick, Darren Potter, Ryan Harley, Dean Bowditch; Daniel Powell, Izale McLeod
Subs used – Adam Chicksen for Chadwick 74 mins;
Subs not used – Mathias Kouo-Doumbe, Alan Smith, Tom Flanagan, George Baldock, Chris Lines
Caution – MacKenzie 90 mins;