Head of Recruitment Paul Mitchell has left Milton Keynes Dons to take up a position with Championship side Southampton with immediate effect.
The 30-year-old leaves stadiummk after over seven years of service in various capacities.
Having joined the club as a player on loan in 2004 before making the move permanent the following year, Mitch spent four years on the playing side of MK Dons, including captaining the side, before hanging up his boots and retiring in January 2009 some 18 months after suffering a horrific ankle-and-leg break.
It was at that point Mitch became involved in work behind the scenes as he took up a role created for him as Community Ambassador and when Karl Robinson took charge at stadiummk he introduced a recruitment department at the Dons and assigned Mitch to his backroom staff.
Chairman Pete Winkelman said: “Paul has been a wonderful servant to the Club as a player, ambassador and in his recruitment role. He is a very popular figure not only at the Club but also in Milton Keynes and it is with sadness that we see him move on to pastures new.
“On behalf of everyone here at Milton Keynes Dons I would like to wish Mitch the very best of luck in the future and we look forward to welcoming him back to stadiummk as a good friend of the Club.”
Paul Mitchell said: “While I am very excited about the new challenge ahead of me at Southampton, I am also extremely sad to be leaving MK Dons – a place I have known as my home for the past seven years. My time at the Club has been magnificent and I would like to thank all the MK Dons Football Club and Sport and Education Trust staff for their almighty support during some incredible years of my life and all the fans for making my time at MK Dons so special.
“I cannot thank the Chairman enough for all of the support he has shown me over the years and for teaching me so many valuable lessons about life after playing. My history with MK Dons is well documented and it has been the hardest decision I have had to make to walk away from the Club I love and people I admire. Everyone knows coming to terms with the end of my playing days was an extremely difficult time for me and the Chairman showed great faith in me by allowing me to start a new career behind the scenes.
“MK Dons is a Club that will forever have a place in my heart and I move on confident that the Club is in the strongest position I have known it to be in and I have every faith that under the guidance of Karl and John and the vital support staff in place within the Club, this team will achieve its ambitions to play in the Championship.”