Rovers’ defender Mark McChrystal has today left the club after four years at The Memorial Stadium.
The former captain of the club, who led the team to successive promotions, made his last appearance for the club at Fleetwood in January, his 114th league game for us.
The defender was signed by John Ward on 3rd January 2013 following his release by Tranmere Rovers.
He formed an impressive central defensive partnership with Tom Parkes and proved himself to be popular with supporters. He was offered, and accepted, a new permanent contract in the summer of 2013.
The former Northern Ireland U-21 captain began his career at Wolverhampton Wanderers, and his time at Molineux included a loan spell with Bradford City.
On his release from Wolves he signed for his local side, Derry City. In January 2007 he joined Partick Thistle and scored once in 15 league appearances for the Scottish outfit.
He returned to Derry City in August 2007 and joined Lisburn Distillery, on a short term contract, in late 2009.
A third spell with Derry City followed before a move to Tranmere Rovers in January 2011and he went on to score once in 41 league appearances for the team from the Wirral.
A one month loan spell at Scunthorpe, in November/December 2012 saw him play three league games for The Iron, and he was released by Tranmere on his return to Prenton Park.
Mark scored his first goal for Rovers in a JPT tie against Bristol City at Ashton Gate, on 4th September 2013.
One of Darrell Clarke’s first actions, after taking over as manager with eight games of the 2013/14 season remaining, was to hand Mark the captain’s armband.
Mark showed he is no slouch between the posts in our one season in The Vanarama Conference, when he took over from the injured Steve Mildenhall in goal during our away game at Wrexham and he skippered the side in the Promotion Play Off Final at Wembley and again last season when we were promoted to League One.
We would like to take this opportunity to wish ‘Macca’ all the best for the future.