The historic meeting was one Dons chief executive Erik Samuelson had been dreading - but sooner or later it had to happen.

AFC were finally facing their nemesis, the so-called Franchise FC that took the original Wimbledon to Bucks nine years previously following a contentious FA 2-1 vote that did the unthinkable - allow an existing club to be bought and transported as inflicted on sports set-ups in the USA.

But as Samuelson pointed out, you can’t enter a competition and then pick and choose who you play.

Surrounded: MK Dons's Alan Smith Wimbledon's Steven Gregory (L) and Yado Mambo (R)

As one might have surmised event before the lunchtime kick off, the clash between Milton Keynes Dons and AFC was more memorable for the vivid, visual protests in the form of banners and chants from both sets of fans.

‘AFC Hypocrites’ from those in the MKD end was trumped by a plane flying over the ground trailing a banner proclaiming: ‘We are Wimbledon,’ paid for by an exiled fan unable to get to the game from his home in the USA.

Plane speaking: An AFC proclamation from on high

AFC fans wore hospital-like face masks, presumably to ward off the imagined stench coming from just being inside At the other end a banner proclaimed: ‘We’re keeping Dons - get over it,’ in response to AFC demanding they drop that part of their name.

The other side of the coin: MK Dons fans

There was a threat from some AFC fans to boycott the match but 3,000 went to Buckinghamshire.

Around 100 of those scampered on to the pitch when Jack Midson’s fine header cancelled out Stephen Gleeson’s strike on the stroke of half time for the home side.

Ah yes, there was a match in progress, although in truth it was fourth billing to the cabaret being played out by fans.

"That was a bit hairy but you can understand their emotion and no one was aggressive towards me," said MK Dons keeper David Martin as the away gathering celebrated breaching his goal.

Historic strike: Jack Midson scores at Milton Keynes

It was all going swimmingly well towards a replay when in the second minute of injury time Jon Otsemobor flicked into Neil Sullivan's net from six yards, triggering a giddy pitch invasion from home supporters this time.

"If I offended anyone, I apologise," said the manager Karl Robinson, who also ran on to the much maligned surface to embrace Otsemobor.

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"Celebrating like a lunatic is better than standing there stoney-faced,” he said somewhat apologetically. Clearly, the tension had even seeped into a man carrying no emotional baggage before the game.

AFC's manager Neal Ardley was beaten but content.

”My main feeling is pride,” he said. “This match that the fans dreaded so much has ended with a celebration of how far this club has come in the last 10 years."