Striker Clayton Donaldson has opened up about his time with Bolton Wanderers, claiming he wouldn’t wish it upon anyone to go through the same, as reported by the Yorkshire Post.
The 35-year-old saw first hand the misery and struggle with the Trotters last season, with players not getting paid and eventually going on strike, forcing the postponement of a game against Brentford.
He’s now returned to his hometown of Bradford City to help them try to get out of League Two, but reflecting on last season he labelled it as ‘absolutely crazy’.
“Last season was mad, absolutely crazy. You would not believe some of the stuff we had to put up and cope with,” he said.
“It made life a lot harder and you saw that on the pitch. But off the pitch, the antics really took a toll on the players towards the end. I would not like to wish it upon anyone to go through that situation.”
The former Sheffield United man played 31 times for Bolton in the Championship last season, bagging just once, but claimed it was an experience he wants to put to bed and move on from.
“Players have had to be very strong mentally and it is not nice when you just want to go out and play football with a free mind. It was definitely a season to try and put to bed and forget about.”
Bradford-born Donaldson spent a portion of his youth career with the Bantams, but moved to Hull City following his release as a 16-year-old. He’s since made 607 senior appearances, scoring 199 goals.
Donaldson didn’t have a good time last season, on or off the field. He wasn’t effective for the Trotters, but it was a poor side he represented and one beset by issues off the field.
It’s bound to affect morale and output on the pitch. Not being paid is bad enough, but the constant drama and speculation isn’t healthy for a player’s mental well-being either.
In League Two, Donaldson should be an effective target man and as he’s going back to his boyhood club, there is an element of romance about the upcoming season.
Bradford could be front runners for promotion and the 35-year-old surely has enough experience to help them achieve their aim.