YOUNG Basingstoke Town goalkeeper Joe McDonnell has signed a professional contract for AFC Wimbledon.

The 20-year-old, a product of the Camrose club’s youth system, impressed during a loan spell at Hendon last season before starring for Jason Bristow’s Conference South side towards the end of the campaign.

“Joe came in and played under-21 games for us last season and he knows Ashley Bayes, who was at Basingstoke previously,” said Wimbledon boss Neal Ardley.

“Joe was outstanding in a match for the under-21s against Charlton last season and it was one of the best goalkeeping performances I’d seen. He came in and trained regularly with us and looked a first-team goalkeeper.

“We are out there recruiting and felt that if we did not get Joe and start trying to develop him then someone else would. We are delighted he has come in to be part of our under-21 set-up next season.”

The loss of McDonnell, for whom Town will be due a fee, leaves Bristow without a goalkeeper with only four days to go until their first pre-season friendly at Winchester City on Tuesday (July 8, 7.45).

However, the Basingstoke boss has indicated that he is close to signing a new No1.