Bradford City confirmed their retained list today after a poor end to the 2020/21 season, and it’s seen nine first-team players depart along with joint-managers Mark Trueman and Conor Sellars.
The former youth team bosses took over in mid-season following the departure of club icon Stuart McCall, and for a few months it looked like they may guide the Bantams into the play-offs.
But a downturn in results saw them lose six of their last seven matches and it’s cost the pair their jobs, and it looks like a whole rebuild is coming as regular first-teamers like Connor Wood and Anthony O’Connor have departed.
Another player to be on the released list is Clayton Donaldson, who arrived at Valley Parade in the summer of 2019 after a brief spell at Bolton Wanderers.
The experienced striker wasn’t a prolific scorer for the Bantams – in 53 League Two games he scored eight goals and it looks like the club are trying to cut the wage bill ahead of next season with his axing.
Quiz: Did these 18 players make more than 100 Bradford City appearances?
Having been unable to interact with fans all season due to playing football behind closed doors, Donaldson has penned a message via Instagram to Bradford fans where he says it was a privilege to play for the club.
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Whilst he was never a prolific scorer in the two seasons at Bradford, Donaldson did offer good hold-up play which he’s developed since he lost the pace from his 20’s.
It isn’t a surprise to see him not offered a new deal though – he’s now 37 years old and the Bantams are probably looking for younger, fresher options going forward, hence why Lee Novak and Billy Clarke also departed.
Donaldson probably feels like he’s got a year left in the legs but it remains to be seen if another EFL club picks him up for the 2021/22 campaign.