Promotion with MK Dons is Kay's fondest football memory

Defender holds his time at Stadium MK dear
Antony Kay celebrates with Samir Carruthers, Rob Hall and Kyle McFadzeanAntony Kay celebrates with Samir Carruthers, Rob Hall and Kyle McFadzean
Antony Kay celebrates with Samir Carruthers, Rob Hall and Kyle McFadzean

Having his family on the pitch to celebrate promotion alongside him was the highlight of his career for Antony Kay.

The defender spent four seasons at Stadium MK between 2012 and 2016, racking up 161 appearances for the club - the 13th most in the club's history.

Starting his career at his hometown club Barnsley, Kay came through the academy system at Oakwell to help the Tykes to promotion in 2006. Six years later, Kay was at Huddersfield when they saw off Dons in the play-offs to earn promotion to the Championship - the second promotion of his career.

But after three years at the club, securing promotion with MK Dons was the highlight of Kay's career because it meant his children could celebrate with him.

He said: "I got promoted with my home-town club Barnsley, and they're the the sort of things you dream about. Supporting a team, making your debut and getting promoted with them. But looking at it now, having my wife there and my four children there supporting me, knowing they will have it in their memories too, it's right up there.

"I was 29 when I signed, I had three kids and another just born, and they were old enough to enjoy it, so they were a part of the celebrations. It gave me great memories for my family and my kids.

"I didn't want to leave (Dons in 2016), but sometimes football is cruel in that sense but you have to just get on with it."

The 2014/15 season is arguably Dons' most successful season ever as they secured promotion to the Championship in a dramatic final day scenario which saw Preston lose to Colchester, while easing past Yeovil themselves.

Kay made the most appearances for the club that season, missing just one game courtesy of suspension. With the team assembled for that campaign, Kay said there was an unmoving air of confidence in the squad which gave them a sense of invincibility.

He continued: "My time at MK was the most enjoyable time of my career. The group we had were unbelievable and it always helps when you're a successful team, We were always knocking on the door to promotion before we finally did it in my third season.

"During that season, we went into every game we were going to win. I made the most appearances that season, I only missed one game, shock, through five yellow cards! I enjoyed every game that year.

"The players we had that season were ridiculous. We had Lewie always had it locked down, me, Kyle, Joe Walsh was pushing us. We had Jordan Spence and George Baldock. Dele (Alli) and Darren Potter, Samir (Carruthers) in and out, Lewis Baker from Chelsea was an unbelievable talent, Will Grigg and Benik Afobe rotated.

"We just didn't think we'd lose any game. Just thinking about that season, we had such team togetherness which helped push us over the line in the end."