Oldham Athletic have moved out of the League One relegation zone after a hard-fought victory at home to MK Dons.
Richie Wellens made one enforced change to his side which drew 2-2 with Blackburn Rovers on Saturday. Wilfried Moimbe served his one game suspension with Gevaro Nepomuceno coming in at full back.
Chuks Aneke returned to the action for MK Dons following his three-game absence due to suspension. He was one of three new additions to the starting XI along with Robbie Muirhead and Ethan Ebanks-Landell.
MK Dons were lively in the early stages of the game as Chuks Aneke forced a save out of Johny Placide, before Robbie Muirhead fired a shot wide a few minutes later.
Aneke’s evening was soon cut short when he suffered a hamstring injury, with Kieran Agard coming on in his place.
Latics had to be wary once again on 17 minutes as Placide misjudged a cross into the box. It went over his head but Scott Wootton could not convert at the back post.
Athletic came into the game and forced a couple of chances in quick succession.
Kean Bryan proded wide before Jack Byrne fired at goal from 25 yards but Lee Nicholls parried. The ball fell to Craig Davies but the striker dragged his effort wide.
The hosts then had a goal chalked off by the linesman – Kean Bryan the man in an offside position when he headed in from Byrne’s free-kick.
It looked like the match would be goalless at the break, but Oldham made the breakthrough when Gerrard scored on 40 minutes. Ben Pringle’s corner into the box was met by Gerrard, who powered his header home (1-0).
Half Time – Oldham Athletic (Gerrard 40′) 1-0 MK Dons
The Latics went close to doubling their lead within a minute of the re-start but Duckens Nazon’s deflected attempt landed on the roof of the net. Dan Gardner then shot wide after the Dons failed to properly clear the resulting corner.
On 52 minutes, the Dons threatened with a free-kick delivered into the area by Muirhead. Ebanks-Landell got a touch to the ball in before Cisse hooked an effort over the crossbar.
Micciche introduced Tavenier on the hour and he was immediately involved, sending in a cross which was claimed by Placide just in front of a lurking Agard. Agard then broke into the Oldham area but was dispossessed by Bryan as he looked to cut back and pull the trigger.
The Dons were doing their best to muster a chance in front of goal but they were met by the stubborn back line which refused to be beaten.
Wellens introduced Tope Obadeyi and Ryan McLaughlin and it started to become a nervy ending.
However, Latics remained disciplined and limited their opponents to no efforts on goal and Latics held out for a deserved three points.
Full Time – Oldham Athletic (Gerrard 40′) 1-0 MK Dons
Oldham Athletic – Placide, Dummigan, Gerrard (c), Bryan, Nepomuceno, Fane, Gardner, Pringle (81’), Byrne (74’), Davies, Nazon (67’).
Subs – De La Paz, Edmundson, Benyu, Benteke, Holloway (67′), Obadeyi (74′), McLaughlin (81′)
MK Dons – Nicholls; Ebanks-Landell, Wootton (82′), Lewington (c); Williams, Upson (61′), Cisse, Tymon; Muirhead, Ugbo; Aneke (14′).
Subs – Sietsma, Brittain, Ward, McGrandles, Nesbitt, Agard (14′), Tavernier (61′), (Nesbitt 82′)
Attendance: 3,381 (119 visiting supporters)