The transfer window has barely been open a week, but Robbie Neilson has already shed three players as he begins to make his mark at MK Dons.
The departures of loaned midfielders Ryan Colclough and George C Williams - both of whom had season-long deals cut short - came as little surprise, but the sale of Samir Carruthers to League 1 pace-setters Sheffield United has freed up, and indeed brought in, more funds to go shopping this month.
Carruthers was out of contract in the summer, and the deal made good financial sense for Neilson, who will look to spend on quality as he looks to drag Dons away from the League 1 relegation zone.
“When a player enters the final few months of his contract, there has to be a value on him,” said Neilson.
“On the financial side, that money can go back into the squad and gives us an opportunity to bring more players in or spend a bit more money on better quality.
“That was the key decision for me.”
Neilson was already promised funds to spend by chairman Pete Winkelman, and with the extra wages freed up by the three already out the door, the manager will have more room in his budget to bring in the calibre of player he’s keen to employ.
But he will need to move quickly. Losing three players from an already depleted squad, and with Dean Bowditch expected to be out until early February with a calf injury, Neilson is very light on the ground.
He, however, said he would not be rushed into signing players for the sake of it.
He said: “Everyone wants something to happen as soon as the clock strikes midnight, but it doesn’t work like that.”