Boss explains decision to allow Welsh midfielder to leave MK Dons

Matt Smith left MK Dons on Saturday to head north of the border
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Graham Alexander said Matt Smith’s first-team opportunities were set to dry up at MK Dons as a result of the signing of MJ Williams.

The Welsh midfielder’s move to Scottish Premiership side St Johnstone was confirmed on Saturday, after rumours broke a day earleir about the possibility of a move.

Smith never really established himself during his 18 months at Stadium MK, making just 31 appearances after his move from Manchester City in January 2022.

In a competitive midfield department, Alexander admitted the capture of former Bolton man Williams would see Smith’s chances of getting a game limited further this season, and with clubs showing interest in the 23-year-old, who went to the Qatar World Cup with Wales last year, allowing him to move on made sense for everyone.

Alexander paid tribute to Smith, saying: “Matt has been great, worked really hard in pre-season training but with MJ coming in, he's seen his chances of starting limited.

“He's a coveted player, so it was common sense to let him go.”

While Smith departed on Saturday, Dons added to their squad on Friday night with the signing of Ash Hunter on a free transfer.

The 27-year-old winger was handed his Dons debut in the closing stages of their 5-3 win over Wrexham on Saturday and showed straight away his desire and intent for his new club.

Alexander added: “Ash is a different player, but gives us a goal-threat. And he has a fire in his belly. He has a point to prove and love those sorts of players.

“He's only had two or three days with us, there is a lot for him to learn but he's a great addition.”