Bolton Wanderers piled further misery on MK Dons with 1-0 victory at the University of Bolton Stadium yesterday.
Daryl Murphy made amends for his ninetieth-minute penalty miss by finding the net three minutes later in a game of late high drama.
The win moves Keith Hill’s men into positive points for the first time this season after their third win in a row but leaves MK Dons floundering two places above them in the final League One relegation place after their fourth successive league defeat.
MK Owner Pete Winkleman sacked experienced boss Paul Tisdale earlier this month and appointed Russell Martin as his successor, but the former Scotland international defender has been unable to halt an alarming slide that threatens the club’s third tier status won under Tisdale last season.
Martin has lost all three games in charge so far, and while injuries and suspensions, particularly in forward positions, are a contributing factor, the facts of the matter are MK have not won in the league since mid-September. Lack of goals appears to be the root of the problem; they haven’t scored more than one goal in a game since September 7 when they beat Wimbledon 2-1.
MK’s cause certainly wasn’t helped by the dismissal of the usually reliable George Williams for raising his arms and catching Thibaud Verlinden in the face in front of the referee. Still, despite some frantic defending, they were unable to keep a resurgent Bolton at bay.
There is nothing worse for any fan than losing to a late winner, and while there were signs of an improvement in performance, most MK fans were devastated with the result when they took to social media.
Most supporters are now starting to think Pete Winkleman made a colossal mistake in sacking Tisdale and appointing the inexperienced Martin, with the chairman coming in for some severe criticism.
Many feel Martin is out of his depth, and the job is too big for his first shot at management.
Some feel an experienced boss is needed before its too late and MK find themselves back in League Two.
Here is a small selection of their responses to the latest defeat on Twitter.
— Paul Goddard (@GoddardPaul96) November 16, 2019
Ridiculous game again. Man sent off, penalty save and still lose the game. At 10 men you hold on, a penalty save you hold on in the last 5 mins you have to hold on. Beaten to easily on the right side and there’s their goal. Not good enough. #mkdons
— Jake Murray (@Murray_MK) November 16, 2019
Sort it out in January or we're down. And if we go down, sell the club. #mkdons
— BadWomble (@BadWomble1) November 16, 2019
Lads played well today, much more positive, trying to play football the MK Away again! Absolutely gutted, but positive signs #mkdons
— Andrew Parker (@andrewparker64) November 16, 2019
Look at the bright side, it'll be easier to get out of the car park.
— Gash (@GA5h8y) November 17, 2019
Ur wrong mate , pete selling the club would mean we would lose our revenue coming from MK1 . We would fold. But we should of appointed a ACTUAL manager and not our cb yes agreed
— MKTILLIDIE123 (@mktillidie123) November 16, 2019
Sadly another league game and no goals, just 2 in 10. Think we can see what our problem is, but must stop making errors at the back!
— Steve Grimwood (@SteveGrimwood) November 16, 2019
What was micchicies record when he was appointed ? Seven straight losses. Can Martin beat that record? I am getting to the point only person to blame has to be Winkleman ????
— sanjuk (@sanjayuk) November 16, 2019
Oh come on guys no striker to score goals, average team. Give this man a chance from jan. tis would be no better at the min
— bberryuk (@mark_blubeberry) November 16, 2019