MK Dons Defender Makes Top Flight Switch

MK Dons defender Tommy Smith has terminated his contract with the club by mutual consent ahead of a move to Macarthur FC in the Australian A-League, a statement on the club’s website has confirmed. 

The 33-year-old is already well travelled after beginning his career in New Zealand at North Shore United before making the switch halfway across the world to join up with Ipswich’s U-18 squad. Loan moves to Stevenage, Brentford and Colchester United followed, where he amassed 14 league appearances during his time on those developmental loans.

Those deals helped the centre-half break into the Ipswich first team at the start of the 2010’s. Before his departure in January 2018, the New-Zealand international made 267 appearances for the side, grabbing 34 goal contributions.

His impressive spell at Portman Road earned him a move across the Atlantic, as he joined Colorado Rapids going on to make 64 appearances for them. Another spell at Colchester, this time on a permanent basis, followed, before being signed by the Dons last summer following their relegation to League Two.

He has failed to make any major impact this season with only 12 matches played in all competitions, most of those coming under Graham Alexander’s spell in charge at Stadium MK, before he was relieved of his duties after the side found themselves in 16th place in the league.

The veteran defender has been in the matchday squads since, however he has not stepped foot on the pitch in League Two since the 21st of October, in a 1-0 loss away to Accrington Stanley.

MK host John Coleman’s side this weekend as they bid to continue their push for automatics under new head coach Mike Williamson.

Writer’s View

This seems like a smart move all round. Smith was clearly not fancied by Williamson, evidenced by his lack of game time in recent months. This move allows him to leave English football with a solid reputation ever since he joined Ipswich in 2008. At the age of 33, there is a chance we may not see him in the EFL again.

MK Dons will also likely be pleased by this decision. On the one hand they are losing a useful squad player, however, removing him off the wage bill now does ensure that they are not burdened with his salary next season if they were to continue to not want him as a part of their plans. As much as they may have wished to receive a fee for him, mutual termination is still beneficial to all parties involved.

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