Cobblers defender McDonald sold to Coventry City for undisclosed fee

Rod McDonald in action against Coventry City in the Checkatrade Trophy last season
Rod McDonald in action against Coventry City in the Checkatrade Trophy last season

Cobblers central defender Rod McDonald has signed for Sky Bet League Two side Coventry City.

The 25-year-old was transfer-listed at the end of the season by manager Justin Edinburgh, and joins the Sky Blues for an undisclosed fee.

Rod McDonald celebrates his brilliant goal in the 4-0 win at Leyton Orient in the Cobblers' league two title winning season

Rod McDonald celebrates his brilliant goal in the 4-0 win at Leyton Orient in the Cobblers' league two title winning season

McDonald still had one year left on his Sixfields contract, but having failed to secure regular first team football last season he has moved on.

Signed from non-League AFC Telford in the summer of 2015 following a trial spell, McDonald initially struggled when introduced to the first team by then manager Chris Wilder.

But he blossomed as the season went on, and by the end of the league two title-winning campaign was one of the first names on the teamsheet, winning himself a new contract along the way.

Wilder’s departure to Sheffield United proved to be the beginning of the end at Sxifelds for McDonald though, as first Rob Page and then Justin Edinburgh overlooked him for selection.

Rod McDonald in action during what proved to be his last start for the Cobblers at Bristol Rovers in January

Rod McDonald in action during what proved to be his last start for the Cobblers at Bristol Rovers in January

In all, McDonald made 29 starts and eight substitute appearances for the Cobblers, scoring three goals.

But he only started two league games last season and didn’t make a single start under Edinburgh, with his last full appearance for the club being the humbling 5-0 defeat at Bristol Rovers in January that cost Page his job.

“Rod has found first team opportunities limited,” said Edinburgh.

“We were honest with Rod at the end of the season. We said that because he hadn’t played as much first team football as he would have liked he was available to move to another club.”

The decision to allow McDonald to leave means the Cobblers are now without a central defender on their books.

McDonald joins Zander Diamond and Gaby Zakuani in leaving, while loanee Lewin Nyatanga has returned to his parent club Barnsley.

Edinburgh doesn’t see that as an issue though, and added: “We are working hard to improve the squad over the summer and we believe it is in the best interests of all parties that Rod makes this move.

“We wish Rod every success in his future career.”