MK Dons set to beat Portsmouth and Wycombe Wanderers in transfer race for 15-goal striker | OneFootball

MK Dons set to beat Portsmouth and Wycombe Wanderers in transfer race for 15-goal striker

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Football League World

MK Dons are set to recruit Cambridge United forward Sam Smith for a six-figure fee, according to an update from journalist Alan Nixon.

The 24-year-old has thrived since being released by Reading last summer, signing on at the Abbey Stadium in a bid to kickstart his career after failing to make a full breakthrough into the Royals’ first team.

With the U’s though, the forward has been able to show why he was so highly rated at the Select Car Leasing Stadium during his days in the Berkshire side’s youth system, scoring 15 league goals during the 2021/22 campaign.

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1 of 22

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This helped to keep his current side afloat in the division with ease – but Cambridge always looked set to be the victims of their own success with the 24-year-old, who looked likely to attract interest from elsewhere during the summer.

Football League World understands Portsmouth and Wycombe Wanderers were both interested in luring him away from Cambridgeshire – but have failed to get agreements over the line ahead of Liam Manning’s side.

Manning’s men have recently been boosted by the £4m they generated from Scott Twine’s departure to Burnley and with this, the third-tier side’s board have sanctioned a move for 24-year-old Smith who looks set to arrive in Buckinghamshire.

The Verdict:

The Buckinghamshire outfit are in desperate need of more scorers following the departure of Twine, who will be an enormous loss to Manning’s side unless they can recruit two or three players that can fill the void left by the Burnley man.

Harry Darling also managed to get in and amongst the goals regularly last season so his departure wasn’t just a blow for their defence – but also for their attacking record which was key to their success last term.

Their defence also played a part, conceding at a rate of less than one goal per league game during the last campaign and this should give them plenty of reasons for optimism going into 2022/23.

But the addition of Smith will be a massive boost, with other new additions in Nathan Holland and Conor Grant also able to contribute.

With Smith only having a year left on his contract, it should perhaps come as no surprise that they have been able to negotiate a six-figure fee, but that’s still a modest price considering his goalscoring record in the third tier during 2021/22.

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