Released by League One side 10 years after £7m Manchester United deal

MK Dons

Alan Smith has been released by MK Dons ten years after switching Leeds United for Manchester United.

When Alan Smith joined Manchester United from Leeds United in 2004 it was a big and controversial move. A hero at Elland Road, he quickly turned to a villain after joining the club's viscous rivals. But he arrived at Old Trafford as a player with plenty of talent and at £7 million was an absolute snip from Sir Alex Ferguson's point of view.

But his time at United was marred by a series of severe injury problems - of course most famously a dislocated ankle suffered after trying to stop a John Arne Riise strike in 2006.

In this time his position on the field also changed, becoming a central midfielder more than his original forward position, and he played a blinder in a shock inclusion against AS Roma in the Champions League in 2007 - a game he scored in and United won 7-1.

But at the end of the season he was sold to Newcastle and in truth he has never really got his career back on track since that ugly injury eight years ago.

His time at Newcastle was largely disappointing - playing just 94 times in five seasons before leaving for MK Dons, originally on loan, and then on a free transfer in 2012.

He has spent two seasons at the Stadium:MK but this campaign has featured just 18 tims, and today it was confirmed his contract at the club would not be renewed.

Smith has been released by the League One club and at the age of 33 it is already rumoured he might be considering retirement from the game due to his continued injury problems.

Smith has helped with coaching in Milton Keynes, and that might be his next port of call if he does decide to hang up his boots.

Who knows where he would be now without those injury problems. It is now ten years since United paid £7 million for his services and the 19-cap England international is now a League One free agent.

Hopefully his next venture proves successful - whatever it is.

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