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Season 2005-2006 : Milton Keynes Dons v Yeovil Town : Saturday 14th January 2006
Football League One : Milton Keynes Dons 1 - 1 Yeovil Town

Venue: National Hockey Stadium
Sat 14th Jan 2006, 3pm kick-off.

Conditions: Persistent rain - horrible!
Pitch: Good but extremely greasy

Scorers: Terry Skiverton (13, 0-1), Izale McLeod (74, 1-1)

Attendance: 5,548 (including approx 600 Glovers fans)

Referee: Uriah Rennie (Yorkshire)
Assistants: John Pearce (Red/Yellow Flag), Rob Steans (Yellow Flag)
Fourth official: Andrew Sainsbury

Bookings:
Yeovil: None
MK Dons: Nicky Rizzo (81, dissent)

Team Line-Ups

Yeovil Town : (4-4-2)
13. Steven Collis
12. Kevin Amankwaah 4. Terry Skiverton 17. Scott Guyett 11. Nathan Jones
25. Arron Davies 7. Paul Terry 29. Chris Cohen 18. David Poole
20. Matt Harrold 10. Phil Jevons

Subs: 1. Chris Weale (GK) 5. Colin Miles 9. Kevin Gall (81, for Jevons) 14. Andy Lindegaard (81, for Davies) 22. Pablo Bastianini

Milton Keynes Dons :
1. Matthew Baker 2. Trent McClenahan 3. Dean Lewington 6. Ben Chorley 7. Wade Small 8. Paul Mitchell 9. Clive Platt 13. Gareth Edds 15. Nicky Rizzo 21. Aaron Wilbraham 30. Mark Ricketts

Subs: 10. Izale McLeod (54, for Wilbraham) 14. Malvin Kamara (72, for Small) 19. Leon Crooks 22. Nick McKoy (72, for Mitchell) 32. Ricardo Batista (GK)

Match Report

With Kevin Amankwaah passing his late fitness test, the only real selection dilemma for boss Steve Thompson was how to reshuffle his midfield following the loss of key playmaker Lee Johnson - sold during the week to Scottish Premier League side Hearts. Arron Davies was the one who got the nod, as Paul Terry was moved into the centre, with Darren Way still a week away from proving his fitness.

Matt Harrold got in an early chance for the Glovers that went wide, but it was from a 13th minute corner that they got their real reward. Some slightly unnecessary defending from full-back Trent McClenahan saw the ball thumped out for a corner when he was under no pressure from an Arron Davies cross, and from the subsequent set piece by Chris Cohen, Terry SKIVERTON got the freedom of Milton Keynes to plant a near post bullet header into the top corner. 1-0 and if that's what signing a new contract does for you then perhaps Messrs Webb and Thompson should start putting pieces of paper under other players noses this week!

Sixty seconds later and that man Skiverton was at it again. Wade Small's shot had been lifted past Steve Collis, but scrambling back, Captain Marvel produced an even better header to lift the ball wide of goal for a corner. Some players might have still had their head in the clouds after just scoring the opening goal, but Skivo showed superb concentration to ensure he didn't score at the wrong end.

Arron Davies saw a heavily deflected attempt strike the woodwork as Yeovil came close to doubling their lead, and the home side were really not achieving a lot of note, bar booting the ball over the away end and into the surrounding car parks. Aaron Wilbraham got the traditional "Johnny Wilkinson" chant when his attempt to volley in a cross midway through the half did just that with the lean-back, head-up-in-the-clouds execution done to perfection.

The Glovers continued their domination of the game as David Poole weaved his way through the home side's midfield, only to find a defender's boot blocking his shot. The ball fell loose to Arron Davies whose shot went skidding wide of the target. Next Matt Harrold broke out of defence and distributed an excellent pass through to David Poole who again turned on his skills to turn the Dons defence, but his 30 yard drive went wide of the target. The home side's wayward shooting again continued, with Wade Small the latest player to add to the growing number of balls in the car park as his curling shot rose high and wide. Nicky Rizzo did at least provide one better attempt - his long range drive skimmed the top of the crossbar with Steve Collis beaten. But these long range efforts pretty much summed up how little possession the Dons were getting inside the Yeovil penalty box. 1-0 and matters looked relatively comfortable.

Half-time: Milton Keynes Dons 0 - 1 Yeovil Town

Arron Davies was forced to block the ball on his own goal-line early in the second half as he stood his ground on the right-hand post from a Dons corner, with Paul Mitchell the player to have his close-range attempt thwarted. At the other end, David Poole continued to torment the home side's defence after he evaded a push in the back to continue a left-wing run, forcing a corner when a defender blocked his narrow-angled shot just inside the box. An hour into the game and again Poole was the main creator of Yeovil's attacking play when he forced keeper Matt Baker to beat out the ball from a fierce drive on the edge of the box. Next Phil Jevons forced Baker to palm the ball over his own crossbar after he surprised the former Hereford man with a lobbed curling effort on the edge of the box.

Yet the Glovers never really kept up the movement off the ball that they'd managed during the first period. When they ran at the home defence, they created gaps for other players to run onto, and perhaps their main downfall during the second period was that too many players were too static, and players like Poole were becoming the exception rather than the rule.

The home side had introduced Izale McLeod to the game ten minutes into the second half and he gave a warning sign when a Yeovil corner was cleared up field, and the pacey player, whose big money move to Wolves broke down this week, raced up field with the Yeovil defence stretched. Thankfully by now, the rain was coming down persistently across the ground, and the grease on the turf up-ended the striker and he ended up looking rather sheepish as the ball tamely dribbled into Steve Collis's arms.

Perhaps with 18 minutes left of the match came the turning point. Matt Harrold's flick-on was perfect for Phil Jevons to run onto as he got in behind the Dons defence but he couldn't keep his shot down and Danny Wilson's side had a great let-off. That was the moment he chose to throw his last two dice as he introduced Nick McKoy and Malvin Kamara as his last two substitutions.

Kamara was to have an instant impact. Paul Terry gave possession away after a Yeovil corner had been only half cleared, and Izale McLeod produced an excellent crossfield ball to his fellow substitute. Kamara managed to get down the entire right wing without a single tackle threatening his stride and his high lofted cross to the back post saw Steve Collis wrong-footed, leaving Izale McLEOD with the chance to finish what he started with a simple header into an empty net.

The uplifted home crowd sensed the possibility of a victory having spent most of the game achieving very little, and McLeod almost did the improbable by being released by a ball down the middle, but his curling shot just about cleared the crossbar with Collis well beaten. Steve Thompson made his own double-substitution with Kevin Gall and Andy Lindegaard replacing Phil Jevons and Arron Davies in an attempt to seize control back of the game, and in the main the Glovers did just that, although without actually grabbing the winner.

Both substitutes created the best efforts. Kevin Gall saw a near post attempt to scramble the ball home thwarted by a defender's block, with the ball eventually ricocheting off for a corner. Then Andy Lindegaard's perfect back post cross curled over the head of keeper Matt Baker in the final minute, rebounding off the crossbar and to safety for what would have been a freak winning goal.

But in the end, the Dons secured their eighth home draw of the season - a result that will do them little good in their efforts to avoid relegation. For the Glovers, an away draw should never be sniffed at but there will have been disappointment that they couldn't capitalise on their first half performance. As for the game itself, it was a curates egg of a match. Three strikes of the woodwork, two balls cleared off the line, two well-created goals and nearly a last minute winner sounds more exciting than it actually was. But particularly in the second half, there were moments when the ball seemed to be involved in a game of ping-pong between the two sides, and in the ever deteriorating weather conditions, the whole thing seemed at times rather messy. In the bleak surroundings of the National Hockey Stadium and the concrete expanse of Milton Keynes, this will not be the sort of day out that Glovers fans will be describing as a classic day out in the years to come. At least with a new stadium on the way, even if the Dons stay up, the experience should not have to be repeated this time next year. Let's hope not anyway!

Badger

MOTM Vote Result:

Player MOTM Score
Terry Skiverton 14 692
Phil Jevons 5 323
Chris Cohen 3 246
David Poole 1 131
Scott Guyett - 123
Matt Harrold 1 115
Arron Davies 1 62
Kevin Gall 1 38

Overall match rating: 5.6 / 10
Performance: 5.8
Entertainment: 5.4

26 votes received.

Any comments/questions please email yeo.motm@ntlworld.com

Full-time: Milton Keynes Dons 1 - 1 Yeovil Town
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Last Updated : 14th January 2006
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