From top six in the League One table, to as low as 14th, Bradford City’s early season form has been a mixed bag, not to mention Yorkshire derbies galore to whet any Bantams fan’s appetite!
Let’s not beat around the bush. The highlight during the first month of the new season was almost certainly a dramatic 2-1 League Cup defeat of local rivals, Leeds United.
The Championship Club took an 82nd minute lead but their 10 men were unable to hold on and conceded twice in the last six minutes with the majority of the near 20,000 crowd lifting the roof off Valley Parade when James Hanson’s winner found the net!
League form was also highly encouraging with just one defeat and 10 points from their first five games, landing them in a league position of fourth. But September was going to be almost the exact opposite…
MK Dons were the opposition on two occasions. A 2-1 away win in the league was sandwiched by four defeats and two draws, with the second visit to Buckinghamshire producing a 2-0 League Cup exit.The two draws were against lowly Port Vale and Colchester so alarm bells started ringing in some fans’ heads.
Four Derbies In Six Weeks…
…three of which were tough to take defeats against South Yorkshire’s finest.
A nationally televised home clash against Sheffield United produced a 2-0 reverse, with right back Stephen Darby’s red card just after half time the game changer.
This was preceded by a 3-1 defeat away to a Barnsley team who hadn’t won at home in the league for over seven weeks and followed a couple of weeks later by Doncaster Rovers taking the three points in front of another good home crowd of nearly 14,000.
The highlight during this period was probably the draw at then undefeated, and still top of the table, Bristol City with late goals resulting in a satisfying 2-2 score line.
End Of The Bad Spell?
The first round of the FA Cup gave Bradford a short trip to non-league FC Halifax, certainly a potential ‘banana skin’.
An early goal from the ‘Shaymen’ threatened an upset but second half goals from John Stead and Portuguese midfielder Filip Morais ensured City were in the draw for the second round, which has given them a home tie against another Football Conference team, Dartford. The magic of the FA Cup is certainly still strong!
Then, possibly the result of the season so far. Second placed Preston North End hadn’t suffered defeat at home in the league since December 2013!!! This clearly meant nothing to Bradford as they took a first half lead through Rory McArdle then, after an 85th minute equaliser from the Deepdale men, grabbed a late winner with a cracking Mark Yeates goal.
Hopefully this momentum will be carried forward into the upcoming games against bottom six teams Gillingham and Leyton Orient.
Meanwhile, striker Aaron Mclean who had high hopes of rediscovering his goal scoring form for City, has gone back to Peterborough United, the club where he made a name for himself, on a short term loan deal.
Provident- The ‘Good Neighbour’
Our partnership with the Club and its charitable foundation will see a large number of disadvantaged young people attend games free of charge over the next couple of months, plus a local junior football team nominated by Provident staff, all of who will take their seats in the Community Enclosure at Valley Parade.
Let’s hope they can help cheer City on to good fortune and a climb up the League One table!