Shrewsbury Town, Player who left MK Dons in February joins Auckland FC along with Shrewsbury Town man

Player who left MK Dons in February joins Auckland FC along with Shrewsbury Town man

Former MK Dons defender Tommy Smith and Shrewsbury Town striker Max Mata have joined Auckland FC, as announced by their official club website.

The New Zealand-based club are preparing for their first season in the A-League and have swooped for two more signings. They have already brought in Jesse Randall, Michael Woud, Francis De Vries and Cameron Howieson.

MK Dons
Image courtesy of: ANDREW BOYERS/REUTERS.

Smith, 34, cut ties with MK Dons in February after his contract was terminated by mutual consent. He has since been playing in Australia for MacArthur but has now switched teams again.

Meanwhile, Mata has been given the green light to depart Shrewsbury Town on loan again following a recent stint in Ireland with Sligo Rovers.

Auckland’s head coach Steve Corica has said: “They have brought into our focus on community, the attacking style of football we want to play and, importantly for a player like Max, the progress pathways we can offer.

“What we’re building here is momentum and today is another significant milestone for the club.”

New club for ex-MK Dons man

Smith is a vastly experienced centre-back and has played just under 500 games in his career to date.

He was born in Macclesfield, Cheshire, but lived in New Zealand as a youngster and has picked up 50 caps for them so far.

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The defender has played for the likes of Ipswich Town, Colorado Rapids, Sunderland and Colchester United in the past.

MK Dons snapped him up last year after their relegation from League One and he made 12 appearances for the Dons during the first-half of the last campaign, 10 of which came in League Two.

Shrewsbury Town striker moves back home

As for Mata, Shrewsbury Town snapped him up in August last year on a three-year deal and he has since played 26 matches for the League One side, chipping in with a single goal.

The Auckland-born man has now returned home to try and get his confidence back.

He started his career at Wellington Phoenix and Eastern Suburbs before embarking on stints in Switzerland with Grasshoppers, Estonia with Nõmme Kalju and America with Real Monarchs.

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