The Bluebirds were held at home by a determined MK Dons, with Tom Lawrence and Stuart O’Keefe having the pick of the chances.
AN INVITING OPENING
Only seconds after the whistle, the Bluebirds came close to taking the lead. Sammy Ameobi whipped a low ball across the face of goal, but it narrowly evaded a blue shirt. City had the ball in the net a minute later, but Anthony Pilkington’s effort was ruled out for offside.
At the other end, the Dons were starting to grow into the match too. Jake Forster-Caskey fired a free kick towards goal, which dipped over the bar. Former Cardiff man Nicky Maynard was put through on goal, but a strong tackle from Matthew Connolly denied the striker from getting his shot away.
Ameobi looked dangerous on City’s right flank, and came close on a number of occasions. After seeing an effort from the edge of the box blocked, the loanee struck another shot at goal after 39 minutes. A deflection carried the ball away from the stranded David Martin, but went narrowly wide of the post. From the resulting corner, new signing Tom Lawrence flicked a header goalward, which agonisingly crashed off the post.
The Bluebirds came close again soon after, with another headed effort. Ameobi’s cross was met by Stuart O’Keefe, but a fine stop from Martin denied the midfielder his first goal of the season. Seconds before the half time whistle, Peter Whittingham fired a shot from the edge of the box, which cleared the crossbar, and sent the teams in level at the break.
Cardiff continued their attacking threat into the second half, with O’Keefe coming close again. A mazy run into the box ended with his shot being well saved by Martin. The Dons keeper was called into action again after 51 minutes, with a spectacular stop denying Tom Lawrence. Lively debutant Lawrence picked up the ball again soon afterwards, drove forward and fizzed a shot just wide of the post. Pilkington then had a scissors kick saved minutes later, as the Bluebirds went in search of an opener.
However, as the heavens opened upon CCS once again, former Bluebird Maynard had a golden chance to grab a goal against the run of play. He cut into the box and dribbled his way around the Cardiff defenders, before blazing his shot high and wide.
The Bluebirds thought they had got the opener through Ameobi, who had raced through unopposed and slotted home. However, the referee had already stopped play because of a head injury to Lawrence.
The introduction of new signing Kenneth Zohore provided City with a different attacking outlet, as they pushed on to try and break the deadlock. Pilkington having a shot blocked, whilst Joe Ralls’ long-range strike was easily held by Martin.
Having been a spectator for most of the match, David Marshall was called into action as the clock hit the 90-minute mark. He denied Forster-Caskey with a strong parry. A late Cardiff resurgence nearly brought the winner – but Scott Malone’s effort was deflected wide of the goal, ending the game goalless.
FINAL SCORE: CARDIFF CITY 0-0 MK DONS
Cardiff City: Marshall, Fabio, Malone, Connolly, Manga, Ameobi (Zohore 78’), O'Keefe, Ralls, Whittingham, Lawrence, Pilkington (Macheda 87’). Subs not used: Moore, Peltier, Dikgacoi, Gunnarsson, Immers.
MK Dons: Martin; Baldock, McFadzean, Walsh, Lewington, Potter, Forster-Caskey; Hall (Bowditch 87’), Carruthers, Williams (Murphy 69’); Maynard (Emmanuel-Thomas 69’). Subs not used: Cropper, Spence, Rasulo, Powell.