Full-time report: Stevenage 2 MK Dons 3
- Credit: Archant
MK Dons score three goals in the last 15 minutes as Boro blow a two-goal lead on home turf
Stevenage were guilty of dropping three points against MK Dons after the visitors scored three times in a sensational finale to the game.
Boro had gone into half-time two goals to the good courtesy of Dean Parrett’s close range strike and Lucas Akins’ penalty after Curtis Obeng had been brought down in the box.
However, with around 10 minutes to go Jordan Spence poked the ball home from two yards before Ben Reeves hit an absolute stunner from 35 yard and, deep into the eight minutes of injury time awarded following an ankle injury to Parrett, Dean Lewington headed home from a corner to hand the visitors all three points.
Stevenage made just one change to the side that draw 0-0 at Carlisle United last week with Parrett coming in to the side in place of Michael Doughty, who dropped to the bench.
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This meant that captain Jon Ashton retained his place in the starting XI after overcoming a medial ligament strain in his left knee that saw him forced off injured at half-time at Carlisle.
Ashton was called upon to make late challenges a number of times in the opening 15 minutes as MK Dons tried the sort of through balls Boro were up against at Carlisle United last week.
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However, when the opening goal went in it came from the boot of a Stevenage man.
Birthday boy Luke Freeman was involved, with a flick on to Francois Zoko, and when the striker played in Parrett his team-mate provided a superb finish, though MK boss Karl Robinson will be left asking questions of keeper Dave Martin as the strike went straight over him.
The visitors rarely threatened to score in the opening 25 minutes, and it was Stevenage who went close again when Freeman cut in on his left foot and struck a low shot that Martin spilled only for his team-mates to clear.
Freeman was then at the far post in his own area flicking away a low drilled pass across goal by the visiting side.
Boro were on top, and when Obeng was clearly fouled in the area just after the half-hour mark up stepped Akins to fire into the corner from 12 yards to give Boro a two-goal cushion.
It could have been three a few moments later through the persistence of Zoko. The striker went up for a ball pumped up field and when the defender headed back to Martin, Zoko beat the keeper to the ball before firing at goal.
George Baldock, though, was on the line to head clear when it looked like a certain goal that the striker’s hard work had probably deserved.
MK Dons had their first proper chance on goal three minutes after the break, and it came from their teenage sensation Deli Alli who struck the post from 25 yards before the ball bounced across the face of goal and away from danger.
The visitors continued to press and when Alan Smith was set up on the edge of the Boro box there was the expectancy that the former Manchester United man would at least hit the target. The shot, though, was fired clear of Day’s bar.
Stevenage lost Parrett to what looked to be a serious ankle injury on the hour mark and the midfielder, stretchered off, was replaced by Doughty.
The hosts were then hit three times in the game’s final 15 minutes as they had all three points wrested from them.
The visitors had taken a corner and after Day had made a superb one-handed save on his line from Lewington, Spence was among a clutch of bodies and he poked home from all of two yards to give his side a lifeline.
Boro sat back and Robinson’s men sensed an equaliser, which they duly got with a goal that silenced the home support.
Reeves was the goalscorer, the midfielder hitting a sensational shot from all of 35 yards that flew past Day and into the top corner leaving Robinson to walk up the touchline fist-pumping towards the away supporters who were cheering in delight.
It was a great fight back, but it got better for MK Dons when deep into injury time an inswinging corner was headed in at the far post by Lewington leaving the MK fans in jubiliation and the Boro fans with heads in hands.
Stevenage: Day, Obeng, Charles (Burrow 90), Dembele, Ashton, Mousinho, Freeman, Parrett (Doughty 64), Smith, Akins (Morais 90), Zoko. Subs: Arnold, Wedgbury, Reid, Hartley.
MK Dons: Martin, Lewington, Smith, Reeves, McLeod (Loveridge 46), Alli, Powell (Bowditch 46), Baldock, Spence, Kay, Odelusi (Galloway 72). Subs: Burns, Randall, Rasulo, Hall.
Ref: Fred Graham