Head of Coaching Richie Barker is looking forward to working with defender Kyle McFadzean once again, this time at MK Dons.
McFadzean was a member of the Crawley Town side that Barker took charge of in August 2012, and during their first season together the duo helped the Red Devils reach their highest ever Football League position of 10th in Sky Bet League 1.
"He’s somebody who I knew a lot about," Barker told MK Dons Player. "Even before I took over at Crawley I coached his two younger brothers at Sheffield United, so I did know about him.
"If I’m being honest, I was surprised at how good he was when I first went there. He had a bit of a stop-start season in my first year with an illness but in my second year he was back to old-self again."
Barker continued: "He’s somebody I’m looking forward to working with again and somebody who I think the players will appreciate having around the place. Even just seeing his enthusiasm for what we’ve got here means that he will be excited as well."
Prior to the McFadzean signing, the Dons had just three central defenders contracted to the Club for the 2014/15 season and Barker revealed that adding to that area of the pitch was a certainly off-season priority.
He added: "We are well aware that we still need other people and we need other positions filling but that was an important role. With Jordan’s loan finishing it did leave quite a gap so we needed somebody in there.
"(Kyle) was on the list of the Football Club’s before I came here but obviously having somebody who has worked with him helped push it over the line.
"The important thing is he ticks all of our boxes in terms of what we were looking for. He’ll be more than comfortable in trying to play out, we played a similar sort of way at Crawley so I know he’ll be able to do that. He does way in with a couple of goals every now and then too.
"In terms of experience and leadership, he’s been in League 1 for over two years so knows the level. He’s also the right age in terms of being able to come in and deal with what we’re looking to do next year. I think he’ll fit in pretty well."
The capture of McFadzean took the Dons’ summer total up to three following the signings of winger Danny Green and midfielder Mark Randall, and Barker hopes the intent shown in all of the deals done so far will help persuade others to move stadiummk.
He said: "I think it was important also that we got somebody like Kyle over the line to ensure we are putting out that intent that we’re going to give it a right good go next year. Signing people like him, when he had plenty of other offers to go elsewhere, will hopefully move on to others as well."