Shaun Williams' free-kick gave MK Dons a much-needed win over Walsall to move them up to eighth in League One.

The first chance of the game fell to Walsall but Sam Manton was denied by a good save from David Martin.

The home side rallied and Patrick Bamford went close with a dipping effort from Lee Hodson's cross.

They took the lead when Williams sweetly struck free-kick went in off the post and they were able to see the game out to secure victory.

VIEW FROM THE DRESSING ROOM

MK Dons manager Karl Robinson told BBC Three Counties Radio:

"I don't think it was ever going to be a classic because of our confidence being knocked slightly and people questioning one or two things, so I thought the way the players responded was magnificent.

"I think today the back four were tremendous. My two men of the match were Shaun Williams and Darren Potter - they were sensational.

"We're gonna be under the radar. That's the way we are. We're not really a top-10 team with all the injuries we're having.

"To be where we are is marvellous. This has been probably my hardest week I've ever had as a manager of this football club."

Lineup, Bookings (1) & Substitutions (6)

Milton Keynes Dons

  • 01 Martin (McLoughlin - 77' )
  • 05 Hodson
  • 03 Lewington
  • 08 Potter
  • 23 Spence
  • 06 Williams
  • 17 Powell
  • 10 Chadwick (McLeod - 54' )
  • 15 Bamford Booked
  • 12 Reeves (Smith - 75' )
  • 21 Banton

Substitutes

  • 02 Otsemobor
  • 04 Flanagan
  • 11 Smith
  • 13 McLeod
  • 16 McLoughlin
  • 18 Baldock
  • 22 Carruthers

Walsall

  • 01 O'Donnell
  • 15 Chambers
  • 03 Taylor
  • 06 Featherstone (Sawyers - 62' )
  • 12 Downing
  • 04 Butler
  • 07 Chambers
  • 08 Mantom
  • 11 Hemmings (Lalkovic - 74' )
  • 10 Westcarr
  • 16 Baxendale (Hewitt - 88' )

Substitutes

  • 02 Purkiss
  • 09 Lalkovic
  • 13 Lewis
  • 14 Benning
  • 24 Hewitt
  • 25 Sawyers
  • 27 Gray
Ref: Dean Whitestone
Att: 7,711

Match Stats

Shots

6 10

On target

1 1

Corners

3 5

Fouls

9 8

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, MK Dons 1, Walsall 0.

90:00 +4:24 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, MK Dons 1, Walsall 0.

90:00 +3:10

Attempt missed. Troy Hewitt (Walsall) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.

90:00 +1:54

Foul by Darren Potter (MK Dons).

90:00 +1:54

Romaine Sawyers (Walsall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

90:00 +1:25

Shaun Williams (MK Dons) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

90:00 +1:25

Foul by Andrew Butler (Walsall).

90:00 +0:36

Corner, Walsall. Conceded by Darren Potter.

88:11

Corner, Walsall. Conceded by Lee Hodson.

87:54 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Walsall. Troy Hewitt replaces James Baxendale.

87:39

Corner, Walsall. Conceded by Lee Hodson.

87:25

Corner, Walsall. Conceded by Jordan Spence.

83:23 Booking

Booking Patrick Bamford (MK Dons) is shown the yellow card.

83:18

Hand ball by Patrick Bamford (MK Dons).

81:39

Attempt missed. Craig Westcarr (Walsall) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

79:22

Attempt missed. James Baxendale (Walsall) right footed shot from the left side of the box misses to the right.

78:49

Hand ball by Patrick Bamford (MK Dons).

76:49 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, MK Dons. Ian McLoughlin replaces David Martin because of an injury.

74:32 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, MK Dons. Alan Smith replaces Ben Reeves.

73:31

Foul by Patrick Bamford (MK Dons).

73:31

Andrew Butler (Walsall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

73:01 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Walsall. Milan Lalkovic replaces Ashley Hemmings.

72:47

Attempt missed. Sam Mantom (Walsall) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

67:50

Foul by Lee Hodson (MK Dons).

67:50

Craig Westcarr (Walsall) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

65:27

Lee Hodson (MK Dons) wins a free kick on the right wing.

65:27

Foul by Ashley Hemmings (Walsall).

64:41 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! MK Dons 1, Walsall 0. Shaun Williams (MK Dons) from a free kick with a left footed shot to the bottom right corner.

63:13

Patrick Bamford (MK Dons) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

63:13

Foul by Adam Chambers (Walsall).

62:25

Corner, MK Dons. Conceded by Andrew Butler.

61:51 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Walsall. Romaine Sawyers replaces Nicky Featherstone.

60:20

Corner, MK Dons. Conceded by Andrew Butler.

58:24

Lee Hodson (MK Dons) wins a free kick on the left wing.

58:24

Foul by Ashley Hemmings (Walsall).

57:01

Attempt missed. Shaun Williams (MK Dons) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left from a direct free kick.

56:10

Jason Banton (MK Dons) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

56:10

Foul by James Chambers (Walsall).

53:53

Hand ball by Daniel Powell (MK Dons).

53:17 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, MK Dons. Izale McLeod replaces Luke Chadwick.

52:54

Attempt missed. James Baxendale (Walsall) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

50:47

Corner, MK Dons. Conceded by Andy Taylor.

45:00

Second Half begins MK Dons 0, Walsall 0.

45:00 +1:25 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, MK Dons 0, Walsall 0.

41:49

Dean Lewington (MK Dons) wins a free kick on the right wing.

41:49

Foul by James Baxendale (Walsall).

39:28

Attempt blocked. Daniel Powell (MK Dons) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked.

36:43

Foul by Nicky Featherstone (Walsall).

36:43

Darren Potter (MK Dons) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

35:06

Ashley Hemmings (Walsall) wins a free kick on the left wing.

35:06

Foul by Darren Potter (MK Dons).

34:47

Attempt missed. Patrick Bamford (MK Dons) right footed shot from more than 35 yards is just a bit too high.

23:25

Attempt missed. Patrick Bamford (MK Dons) header from the centre of the box is just a bit too high.

19:38

Adam Chambers (Walsall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

19:38

Foul by Patrick Bamford (MK Dons).

18:45

Corner, Walsall. Conceded by David Martin.

18:10

Attempt saved. Sam Mantom (Walsall) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

15:54

Foul by Andy Taylor (Walsall).

15:54

Daniel Powell (MK Dons) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

15:37

Attempt missed. James Baxendale (Walsall) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

12:01

Attempt missed. Craig Westcarr (Walsall) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.

7:09

Attempt blocked. Craig Westcarr (Walsall) header from the centre of the box is blocked.

6:13

Attempt missed. Sam Mantom (Walsall) left footed shot from outside the box is too high.

3:34

Attempt missed. Daniel Powell (MK Dons) right footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the right.

0:44

Foul by Daniel Powell (MK Dons).

0:44

Ashley Hemmings (Walsall) wins a free kick on the left wing.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

Live data and text provided by our data suppliers