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Match Previews

Bradford City (H) Preview

20 March 2024

Match Previews

Bradford City (H) Preview

20 March 2024

There is a lunchtime Yorkshire derby for Town fans to look forward to this weekend as Bradford City visit The Envirovent Stadium.

With both sides separated by just a single point in the table and still harbouring playoff ambitions, there is plenty for both sides to play for.

Our opponents

The Bantams finished last season in sixth position, but exited the playoffs at the first hurdle after a defeat over two legs to eventual winners Carlisle United.

They recruited heavily in the summer, bringing in the likes of former Town players Alex Pattison and Lewis Richards, and were instilled as one of the promotion favourites.

The club parted ways with manager Mark Hughes in October, being replaced by Graham Alexander a month later. A six-game unbeaten run had propelled them back into the playoff mix but three home defeats in the past week has dented ambitions.

The Bantams come into the game in 17th position on 50 points. They have though posted more victories on the road (7) than on home turf, taking 24 points from 18 games.

Previous meetings

The two sides played out a 1-1 draw at Valley Parade earlier this season, Jamie Walker netting in injury time after Matty Daly had put Town ahead late on.

Last season, Bradford came away with a 2-1 win at The Envirovent Stadium thanks to an Andy Cook penalty and a winner from Tyreik Wright after Jaheim Headley had levelled.

In the 2020/21 season Josh McPake scored a minute from time after Andy Cook had cancelled out Jack Muldoon’s first-half goal and in the 2021/22 season a second-half brace from Jack Diamond secured a 2-0 win for Town.

The man in charge

Graham Alexander is in the dug out for the Bantams, having replaced Mark Hughes earlier in the season after he himself had departed MK Dons in mid-October. Alexander had previous managerial spells at Motherwell, Salford City, Scunthorpe and Fleetwood.

He previously had a long playing career at the likes of Scunthorpe, Luton, Preston and Burnley, also winning 40 caps for Scotland.

Alexander has won 12 of his 26 games in charge at the club.

Ones to watch

Andy Cook will be the goal threat for Saturday’s visitors, having another prolific season with 15 goals and five assists, he'll likely be partnered by Tyler Smith who has four goals in 17 games.

Both Richie Smallwood and Alex Gilliead have been regular features in midfield whilst Matthew Platt has 25 starts in defence.

The January transfer window saw them secure permanent moves for goalkeeper Sam Walker and former-Town loanee Calum Kavanagh as well as a loan move for Tyreik Wright.


Bradford have spent much of their recent history in the top two divisions of English football, spending two seasons in the Premier League under Paul Jewell at the turn of the century, the first of which saw them pull off ‘The Great Escape’ as the club survived relegation on the final day by defeating Liverpool at Valley Parade.

However, consecutive relegations saw them tumble through the divisions in the mid-2000’s and although they made a return to League One, they were relegated back to the bottom division following the 2018/19 season.

Team news

Simon Weaver continues to be without Lewis Thomas, Sam Folarin and Liam Gibson for Saturday’s encounter, however Rod McDonald made his return from injury at Barrow last weekend and will be hoing to be involved again.

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