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Bradford Preview

By: Richard Hubbert
Date: 31/12/2002

TOWN really need to pick up another decent result of Wednesday in order to close the gap on their closest rivals, Bradford City who are four points above the Mariners. A loss widens the gap, but a win will edge Town closer to those elusive fifty Division One points.

Home > 2002-2003 Season > Previews > Bradford (h)

The Bottom Line

Once again, Town need to keep their little run going in order to stay clear of the improving Stoke, Brighton and Sheffield Wednesday. A win or even a draw without the likes of Pouton, Barnard and Oster would mentally be a huge confidence booster for the Town fans and players alike.

The Opposition - Any Good?

Despite Bradford’s awful financial problems and their long list of injured players they still have some extremely useful players in their lineup. Ex-Mariner Aidan Davison will play between the sticks and in front of him will be the experienced Wayne Jacobs (left) and Peter Atherton. Up front they have ex-Leeds and Forest forward Andy Gray who is the club’s top scorer with nine goals and netted in the Bantam’s 2-1 win at Wolves on Saturday.

Recent Form


WSheff Wed(h)2-0

Players To Watch



Terry Cooke

Andy Gray

With the premature departure of winger John Oster still bitter in the mouths of the Town faithful, the Mariners need someone to come in and continue Oster’s hard work. This now is surely the perfect opportunity for ex Manchester City midfielder Terry Cooke to cement a place in the Town team after being left out for the past two months. Cooke now needs to show the fans and Paul Groves what they have been missing and what sort of game he has on Wednesday could be vital to the final result.

When bursting onto the football scene at Leeds United, there were high hopes for Andy Gray. However, his career has faltered in recent years, but it seems a free transfer move to Valley Parade has done him a world of good. Apart from Leeds, the midfielder come attacker, has had loan spells at Preston, Bury and Oldham but his nine goals this season have really caught the eye of many admirers and will be a test for the Town defence.

Top Scorers



Kabba 6
Oster 5
Pouton 4
Campbell 4

Gray 9
Proctor 4
Evans 3

Team News



  • Firstly, Simon Ford, Jason Gavin and Iain Ward are all doubtful with knocks and bruises but may be forced to play.

  • More certain to be out is Tony Gallimore who may not return until mid January while Darren Barnard is not expected to be fit in time.

  • This means that Steve Chettle may be recalled at left back, where he played at Derby.

  • Ideally, Town would like to rest John McDermott who has been out for a month but may be forced to stick with him.

  • In midfield, Town have been hit with the news that Alan Pouton will be out for the whole of January.

  • Meanwhile, Stacy Coldicott and Paul Groves both have knocks, but once again may be forced to play through the pain barrier. This though, could mean a first start for Chris Bolder.

  • One likely move though is that Staurt Campbell moves to the left side of midfield and Terry Cooke is recalled down the right flank.

  • Up front, Darren Mansaram is a doubt, so David Soames will stand by to deputise if need be.

  • After making some surprise changes for the game at Derby on Thursday, Paul Groves has said that once again he will change things around.
  • In stark contrast with the Mariners, the Bantams have few new injury worries. They have though, of course, the long term losses of Ashley Ward, Thomas Kearney and Danny Cadematari.

  • The only possible change is that Robert Molenaar may be fit to be included in the squad, however, manager Nicky Law is unlikely to change the defensive combination of Mark Bower and Peter Atherton at the back, who played so well away at Wolves on Saturday.

  • On the bench, Law will run the risk of having no reserve keeper with Ben Myhill been sent back to Aston Villa because of the anticipated arrival of Gary Walsh from long term injury.
  • Probable Starting XI's


    Danny Coyne
    John McDermott
    Simon Ford
    George Santos
    Steve Chettle
    Stuart Campbell
    Iain Ward
    Paul Groves
    Terry Cooke
    Darren Mansaram
    Steve Livingstone
    Aidan Davison
    Gus Uhlenbeek
    Mark Bower
    Peter Atherton
    Wayne Jacobs
    Claus Jorgensen
    Michael Standing
    Simon Francis
    Lewis Emanuel
    Andy Tod
    Andy Gray



    David Soames
    Jason Gavin
    Stacy Coldicott
    Chris Bolder
    Sean Allaway (GK)
    Paul Evans
    Mark Danks
    Paul Reid
    Robert Morgan

    Last Time Out

    The two sides met at Valley Parade in August in a dull 0-0 draw. The game saw ex Town forward Robert Taylor make his second debut and subsequently go off injured after 20 minutes. Also making his debut for Town was Steve Kabba who made a bright debut in what was a drab affair.

    Town Team: Coyne, McDermott, Gallimore, Groves, Chettle, Coldicott, Barnard (Robinson), Campbell, Cooke, Taylor (Rowan), Kabba.
    Subs (not used): Ford, Ward, Hughes.

    Attendance: 10,917    Report

    Bradford Head-to-Head (37th on The Opposition Ladder).


    Fishy prediction: 1-0 Town. Reader's POMs


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