U's in £300,000 bid for Dons' striker
MK DONS target man, Clive Platt, is in line to become Colchester United's first signing of the summer.Front-runner Platt, nicknamed "The Tree" by previous Dons boss Martin Allen, is in talks with the U's over a possible £300,000 move to Layer Road.
By Carl Marston
MK DONS target man, Clive Platt, is in line to become Colchester United's first signing of the summer.
Front-runner Platt, nicknamed "The Tree" by previous Dons boss Martin Allen, is in talks with the U's over a possible £300,000 move to Layer Road.
U's manager Geraint Williams has put the emphasis on bolstering his threadbare strike-force department, following Chris Iwelumo's move to Charlton Athletic last month.
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And Platt certainly fits the bill as a ready replacement for Iwelumo - both men stand at 6ft 4ins, and both were amongst the goals last term.
Platt, 29, netted 18 goals in 43 league appearances for the Milton Keynes club last season - the Dons were eventually beaten in the League Two play-off semi-finals.
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A deal looks on the cards, especially as Wolverhampton-born Platt has decided not to join his MK Dons team-mates on a pre-season trip to Portugal next week.
Dons new assistant manager, Ray Mathias, confirmed: "Clive (Platt) will not go away to Portugal with us.
"With his head the way it is, because of the other distractions he has at the moment, we felt it would be best for him to stay behind and sort things out."
But the Dons are keen to hold onto their big striker. He still has a year to run on his current contract, and has been offered a new deal to stay at Milton Keynes under new manager Paul Ince.
Platt signed for MK Dons in January, 2005, and has gone on to prove a useful foil for fellow striker Izzy McLeod. He began his career as a trainee at Walsall, and has also played for Rochdale, Notts County and Peterborough.
The U's current record transfer fee remains a modest £50,000, paid to sign Neil Gregory from Ipswich in 1998, and Adrian Coote from Norwich in 2001.
Securing the services of Platt, therefore, if personal terms can be agreed, would mean smashing the club record by sixfold.
In addition to Iwelumo's departure, the U's are also facing up to the prospect of losing fellow attackers Richard Garcia and Jamie Cureton.
Both Garcia and Cureton have been linked with a move to Hull City in recent weeks. Garcia's current contract expires on July 1, while Cureton has already had a transfer request turned down by the Essex club.