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Tilney turns pro

21 October 2014

Ben Tilney has signed his first professional contract with MK Dons.

The young defender, who has been with the Academy for 10 years, has put pen to paper on a deal which will run until June 2016. He becomes only the fourth player to sign professional terms prior to his 18th birthday.

Speaking to mkdons.com, Tilney said: “It’s great to have signed my first pro deal. I’ve been at the Club since I was eight, so 10 years, and I’m delighted to have made it first through my scholarship and now my pro.

“The Club have let me express myself and be my own person, which I really appreciate. I’ve loved every minute and I’m excited for the future.

“I’m thankful to Mike for guiding me through my scholarship and also the gaffer for giving a chance with the first team in pre-season – an experience I thoroughly enjoyed.”

Tilney impressed during his time with the first-team in pre-season, featuring in eight of the 10 summer friendlies. The classy left-footer also played a key role in the Dons’ Final Third Development Cup victory over Cambridge United last month, setting up Tom Hitchcock for the side’s first goal.

For the Under-18s, Tilney has made 13 appearances and already has three goals to his name. He will continue to be available for Mike Dove’s side, while also training with the first-team and featuring for the development squad.

First-team boss Karl Robinson added: “Ben is an exciting talent which is why we’ve given him this deal early. He came away with us in Ireland and did really well, and also showed in the friendly away at Dagenham & Redbridge that he’s got tremendous potential.

“We want to know see him continue to develop, alongside his fellow Academy graduates in the first team. He is an excellent example for other young players to aspire to.”

Tilney signed his deal on the pitch at stadiummk, ahead of the first-team’s Sky Bet League 1 clash with Fleetwood Town on Tuesday evening.

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