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Long-serving Milton Keynes Dons threesome David Martin, Darren Potter and Dean Bowditch will all leave Stadium MK at the end of season upon the expiration of their contracts, the club has announced over the past week.
Each have been a cornerstone for the success enjoyed over the past five years in particular, which culminated in promotion to the Championship in the 2014/15 season.
Between them they have turned out a staggering 821 times for the Buckinghamshire team, with Martin behind only team-mate Dean Lewington in the list of all-time appearance makers for the club.
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Part of the transition from the old Wimbledon FC to MK Dons in 2004, goalkeeper Martin has been a permanent fixture since his move back to Milton Keynes in 2010.
However, despite making 332 appearances across both spells, he has decided now is the time for a change – stating that both parties will now ‘go their separate ways’.
Speaking of his decision to seek pastures new, the 31-year-old said, ‘”I thank the fans that have supported me through all the good and bad times we’ve seen at the club,”.
Midfielder Potter has also enjoyed a successful spell for the Dons. Joining from Sheffield Wednesday in 2011, he has gone on to play 262 games for the men from MK1 – and was another key part of their promotion-winning side of 2015.
“I shall now be seeking a new challenge elsewhere,” Potter told www.mkdons.com.
He also praised fans of his soon-to-be former club, adding, “I would like to say a huge thank-you to the fans, who have been nothing but fantastic to myself and my family during my time here.”
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Finally, attacker Bowditch rounds off the three departures from the club, who ends his six-year stint in the South East.
The striker has bagged 48 goals in 227 games during his time with the 2008 Johnstones Paint Trophy winners – however he too has decided to seek a change of environment.
“I’ve enjoyed some fantastic memories during six years at MK Dons but all great things come to an end and it’s time for a new challenge,” the 30-year-old revealed.
“I will never forget the night against Manchester United, promotion to the Championship and scoring the winning goal against AFC Wimbledon earlier this season.
There is no doubt that all three will be big losses to boss Robbie Neilson for the forthcoming campaign – and the challenge now lies at his door to try and replace the proven League One quality exiting his squad.
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