Veteran player, Mark McChrystal has been released after being at the club for four years. Bristol Rovers had announced the news of his departure earlier this morning.

The former skipper has made a total of 114 league appearances for the Pirates. He joined the Rovers side back in 2013 on a free transfer after being allowed to leave his former club, Tranmere Rovers. McChrystal’s contract was deemed as a short-term but he went on to play for four more seasons.

The Irishman was one of six players told by manager Darrell Clarke that he would no longer be in plans for the first team squad and was free to search for other clubs. Clarke has signed 7 new defenders this season which meant that McChrystal would be doubtful to be in the team’s lineups week-in-and-week-out.

Darrell Clarke was keen to pay his tribute to the 32-year-old: “One of my first jobs was to hand him the captain’s armband and I was delighted that he went on to become the most successful skipper in the club’s history.”

“He has been a model pro during all the time I have known him and he has set a great example for the younger players at the club.” He added.

Personal Response

Mark has been a real credit to the team since the day he joined. He’s always had the enthusiasm and dedication that we expect all players to present themselves with. He’s followed our journey from being in relegation at the end of the 2013/14 season to back-to-back promotions where we stand close to reaching the top 6.

However, we brought in Peter Hartley, Connor Roberts and Jake Clarke-Salter at the beginning of this season which meant that McChrystal’s chances of playing in the squad became doubtful unless one of the defenders would be ruled out due to suspensions or injuries.

After Roberts was recalled back to his parent club, Clarke-Salter and Hartley were both ruled out through injury, giving Mark the opportunity to play. We then added another five new signings to the squad; four being defenders which meant his contributions to the team were no longer needed.

However, we brought in Peter Hartley, Connor Roberts and Jake Clarke-Salter at the beginning of this season which meant that McChrystal’s chances of playing in the squad became doubtful unless one of the defenders would be ruled out due to suspensions or injuries.

After Roberts was recalled back to his parent club, Clarke-Salter and Hartley were both ruled out through injury, giving Mark the opportunity to play. We then added another five new signings to the squad; four being defenders which meant his contributions to the team were no longer needed.

The club has also announced that youngster, Tyler Lyttle has been released.


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