Salford City have dropped to 20th in League Two after a 3-1 defeat to MK Dons despite taking the lead.

Karl Robinson’s side were approaching this game after a disappointing 2-0 defeat to Gillingham,
with the Ammies only managing to secure one point in the previous three games.

The Ammies travelled to Stadium MK in the hopes of returning to the form they started with under the management of Karl Robinson.

Salford travelled to Stadium MK – via Alfie Mulligan

But with their opponents coming off the back of a strong 2-1 win over top-of-the-league Mansfield Town, it was going to be a difficult fixture for the Salford to come away with all three points.

However, the Ammies started strongly, putting the home side under pressure from the first whistle.

The high press was making it a challenge for MK Dons to get out of their half, with Karl Robinson’s side posing a threat to the home side’s back three.

The pressure started to boil over, with the partnership of Matt Smith and Junior Luamba causing problems for the home side’s defence.

With Salford winning a corner in the 12th minute of the fixture, this proved to be the breaking point, with the inswinging corner coming into the box.

Junior Luamba attacking down the right wing – via Salford City FC

The cross was met by Theo Vassell’s diving header that was stopped by MK Dons keeper Michael Kelly, with the ricocheting ball falling into the feet of Matt Smith.

The Salford striker was able to force the ball through the keeper’s legs into the back of the net, much to the shock of the 6,000 home supporters.

However, despite the strong start from the Ammies, Milton Keynes began to grow in confidence,  pushing back the Salford pressure.

With cracks beginning to show when MK Dons, Kyran Lofthouse was able to cut inside and float a ball onto the head of Matt Dennis.

The keeper was able to scoop the headed attempt around the post, with a stretching save to deny the Milton Keynes forward.

Although the warning signs began to show in the 28th minute when a switch ball found Kyran Lofthouse, beating the tackle of Luke Garbutt, and passing it forward to Alex Gilbey.

The MK Dons midfielder played it back into the path of Lofthouse, who cut inside before firing the ball past a stretching Alex Cairns at the near post.

Ryan Watson against MK Dons in the 3-1 defeat – via Salford City FC

With the score level, Salford would have to react positively if they wanted to compete with a side battling for promotion places.

However, it didn’t take long for Salford to see themselves behind in the 31st minute, with Lofthouse passing the ball to a free Alex Gilbey.

The midfielder found himself free on the edge of the box, opting to chip the ball into the top left corner over the Salford keeper who was stood five yards off his line.

The quick turnaround proved detrimental to the Ammies, but the final nail came in the seventh minute of added time.

The Milton Keynes corner came into the box, finding the head of Emre Tezgel.

The header wasn’t strong but hit a defending Matt Smith, who changed the direction of the ball, sending Alex Cairns the wrong way.

With the Ammies coming off deflated at halftime, it was going to take a lot for them to come back into the fixture.

However, despite the anticipated turnaround from the Ammies, the second half wasn’t a memorable one, with Milton Keynes failing to manage a shot on target.

With MK Dons already having a considerable lead on the Ammies from the first half, they were happy to let the Ammies have the ball.

As Mike Williamson’s side defended well keeping Salford’s top scorer Matt Smith at bay.

However, as the half developed it grew into a more physical one, with six of the seven yellow cards being awarded in the second half with the Ammies registering five in total.

With the final whistle sounding, cheers could be heard from the 6,000 home supporters with the MK Dons now moving up to fourth in the league with Crewe Alexandra losing 2-0 to Doncaster Rovers.

The away side made sure to applaud their travelling away fans, who made themselves heard throughout the game despite the difficult result.

The Ammies will have to go back to the Peninsula next Thursday, hoping to bounce back against rivals Stockport County, with Karl Robinson’s side looking to return to winning ways.

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