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Quartet offered pro deals

Posted: Fri 21 Feb 2014
Author: mkdons.com

MK Dons have today offered professional contracts to four of their academy scholars ahead of the 2014/15 season.

Brendan Galloway, Harry Hickford and Will Summerfield along with first-year scholar Giorgio Rasulo have all been offered professional deals by the Football Club and will become members of the first-team squad from the summer.

The quartet join young midfielder Dele Alli, who signed a three-year deal in July, in becoming the largest class of young professionals signed by manager Karl Robinson.

Speaking to mkdons.com, a delighted Robinson said: “It’s an exciting time for these young players and I’m happy to be a part of that. The first-team and academy staff have put a lot of work into these players by playing them and integrating them into the group.

“It’s my biggest class as a manager. We have some who are ready to make an immediate impact in Brendan and Giorgio and some who will hopefully benefit us over the course of the next 12 months in Harry and Will.”

England Under-18 international Galloway is a versatile defender who, prior to this season, featured primarily in midfield. The Zimbabwe-born starlet has already played 11 times for the first-team and scored his first senior goal in the 4-1 FA Cup with Budweiser win over FC Halifax Town in November.

Rasulo also played in that FA Cup with Budweiser clash and took his total appearances for the first-team up to five. The forward, who has eight England caps to his name, made his debut aged 16 in last season’s 6-1 win over Cambridge City.

Hickford, a talented centre-back, has yet to make a senior appearance for the Dons but has been named as an unused substitute on two occasions, including Tuesday night’s goalless draw with Preston North End. Hickford has donned the role of Head Apprentice this season.

Likewise, Summerfield is still waiting to make his first-team debut but the tricky winger did impress in the pre-season friendly against a Tottenham Hotspur XI at stadiummk back in August. Summerfield has scored twice for Mike Dove’s Under-18s side this season.

Director of Youth Dove added: “I am extremely proud of all them and if you look back at the likes of Seyi Ojo and George Williams who have moved to the Premier League, that’s seven players from two year groups who have gone to become academy successes.

“Dele has obviously flourished in the first-team environment and he’s gone on to play over 20 games. Giorgio is a year below the rest but he made his debut last year and I remember going up to Rochdale with Brendan two seasons ago. Harry, of course, was the on the bench in the week for the first-team and Will has impressed in training.

“It’s an exciting time for them but we now turn our attention to our schoolboys and we’ll be looking to make decisions on them soon.”

Meanwhile, second-year scholars Ben Grant and Kelvin Osei-Addo have been told they will not be offered professional contracts by the Football Club and a free to pursue their football opportunities elsewhere.

A decision has yet to be made on the future of Remy Forrester.

Dove added: “I want to give a mention to both Ben and Kelvin. Ben has been with us since he was eight years old and the improvement he’s made during his apprentice period has been phenomenal; he’s matured into an all-round good person and footballer.

“Kelvin’s a true goalscorer but we just felt he needed to do a little bit more. We certainly feel he can stay in the game and we’ll work hard with him from now to make sure that we can get him playing somewhere.

“Remy’s just coming back from a long injury now so we’ll monitor him over the next couple of months. It’s been so hard for him and I want to give him a huge pat on the back for the way he’s dealt with it.”

MK Dons would like to thank Ben and Kelvin for their contribution during their time with the Football Club and wish them all the best in the future.