Are MK Dons all sold out with nowhere to go?

George Baldock
George Baldock

Sometimes, the money is simply too good to turn down, but at what stage are MK Dons going to do just that?

Sam Baldock, Sheyi Ojo, Dele Alli and now George Baldock have all left Stadium MK for pastures new down the years, with big money price tags attached to their heads.

Dele Alli

Dele Alli

But with the 'significant' money handed over for the younger Baldock's services, and the similar description of the fee paid for Samir Carruthers to the eventual League 1 champions back in January, Dons should have plentiful coffers to go out and splash on a new squad... right?

READ MORE: Baldock couldn't turn down Blades move
If history is anything to go by, the chequebook has been opened for seemingly everything but first team additions.

In 2011, Sam Baldock was one of the hottest properties on the market, firing in goals from all angles for Dons. But having already turned down a move to Peterborough earlier that summer, the older Baldock brother was sold to West Ham - at the Championship at the time - for a significant fee. His replacement though, failed to live up to the hole left by the departing striker.

Charlie MacDonald was far from the striker Dons needed, or indeed lost in the Baldock transfer. In fact, it could easily be argued Dons have failed to replace Baldock in the six years since his move.

MK Dons chairman Pete Winkelman

MK Dons chairman Pete Winkelman

Ojo's deal to Liverpool caught the attention for the price tag rather than any noticeable impact on the pitch for Dons - an academy prospect heading for the Premier League is hardly a groundbreaking occurrence but at the time, seeing a former Dons in the bright lights of the top flight was a spectacle, until a certain Alli shook it up once more.

Like Sam Baldock though, Alli was never replaced after his sale to Tottenham in 2015. Helping Dons to Championship promotion in his final months at the club, Alli has gone from strength to strength. Dons on the other hand, have been relegated and finished at the bottom of the top half.

His transfer, from Tottenham's perspective, was a bargain. But an estimated £5 million for a club in League 1 was a monumental fee, but Dons saw precious little of the value out on the field, and certainly not to the level of the fee. While Dons broke their transfer record in signing Kieran Agard last year, it wasn't even close to Alli's sum. Meanwhile, Dons have yet to attract a player of similar qualities or attributes and it has been painfully apparent on the pitch.

George Baldock, sold to Sheffield United on Tuesday, was arguably Dons biggest asset. Young, enthusiastic, exciting on the ball - a modern full back with pace, determination and charisma, the club had already turned down a bid for him last August from a Championship club - believed to be from brother Sam's Brighton - before accepting the Blades almost a year later.

Robbie Neilson

Robbie Neilson

There is nothing wrong with being a club which sells assets, but there needs to be an ambition to match the actions. Year after year, the club spills the line 'we should be in the Championship' be it from a manager, player or from the chairman. 'With facilities like these' is another. But until money is spent on the playing squad, not the stadium or plans for a training ground, that ambition cannot be lived up to. The mentality needs to change, or the line they're selling needs to.

After a summer clearout by boss Robbie Neilson, with the likes of David Martin, Darren Potter, Nicky Maynard, Dean Bowditch, more than likely Ben Reeves and now George Baldock all out the door, leaving his first team in tatters, now more than ever, the chequebook needs to be opened for players. There are, after all, precious few other players left to fill a shop window.