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REPORT: Bradford City 2-1 Town

PUBLISHED

18:33 18th March 2017

by swindontownfc.co.uk

Swindon Town suffered more heartbreak after conceding two late goals to slip to a 2-1 defeat to Bradford City at Valley Parade earlier this afternoon.


The Robins were under the cosh for large chunks of the first-half but defended bravely to ensure it was honours even at the break, with The Bantams missing a flurry of chances.


Nicky Ajose gave his side the lead late on in the second-half but Charlie Wyke struck twice in quick succession to ensure the spoils remained in Bradford.


Town plumped for just the one change with Lawrence Vigouroux coming in to replace Will Henry, who dropped to the bench.


Jon Obika and Nicky Ajose once again led the line together with the Robins lining up in a 4-4-2 diamond formation.


With both teams needing three points for different reasons, it was the home side who flew out of the traps and carved out the first chance of the game.


Tony McMahon floated in a deep free-kick and Rory McArdle met it, but he could only plant his header over the bar.


Town then enjoyed a little spell of pressure themselves but were unable to find a way through the Bradford backline, with Ben Gladwin hammering wide after being teed up by John Goddard.


The Reds were forced to do plenty of defending in the early exchanges and they had to weather a storm with Bradford attacking at will.


McArdle headed over again from a McMahon corner before the hosts went closer minutes later after Charlie Wyke’s header crashed back off the post.


The Bantams also won a string of early corners but they were being frustrated by Town who were defending well, while they threatened at the other end as Charlie Colkett lashed an effort straight at Colin Doyle after Ben Gladwin’s surging run was brought to an end.


Mark Marshall flashed a strike from distance past the far post with both sides trying their best to land the first blow.


However, the finishing wasn’t quite there in the first-half with Marshall dragging wide from about twenty-yards after Gladwin lost possession.


John Goddard went close for the Reds towards the end of the first 45-minutes but his free-kick just crept over the bar.


It was then Bradford’s turn to try and turn the screw again and they carved out the best chance of the game with Lawrence Vigouroux producing a superb stop to keep out Nathaniel Knight-Percival’s header, before springing into action again to deny McMahon on the follow up.


There was still time for one more chance and, again, it went the way of the home side but they were unable to make it count before the break with Jordy Hiwula hitting a tame effort well wide.


Town opted for a change at the interval with Brad Barry replacing Fankaty Dabo, who had picked up a booking in the first-half.


Vigouroux had to be at his very best to somehow keep out McArdle’s header in the early stages of the second-half after the centre-back had rose highest to meet McMahon’s corner.


Town were having to withstand wave of wave of attack but they were holding firm with the Bantams unable to finish their chances.


Hiwula was off-target from distance before Josh Cullen sliced a volley well wide after The Reds could only half clear a dangerous delivery.


Chances were becoming less frequent the longer the game went on but the hosts went close again after Alex Jones stabbed wide following a good passage of play in and around Town’s penalty area.


The Reds made a change just shy of the 75-minute mark with Luke Norris coming on to replace Ben Gladwin as Town looked to spruce up their attacking options in the final-third.


And it was Town who opened the scoring with Norris playing an instant role as he set Obika free, with the striker in turn playing in Ajose who sent a cool finish into the back of the net.


Wyke then glanced a header just wide as City looked for an instant response, before Colkett’s header looped over the bar moments after Alex Jones was denied by Vigouroux.


However, The Bantams were soon back on level-terms after Charlie Wyke slammed home from close-range, before the striker struck again in the dying seconds to inflict late heartbreak on Town.


TEAMS AND STATS:


SCORERS - Nicky Ajose (75), Charlie Wyke (85, 90).


BRADFORD CITY - Doyle; Meredith, McArdle, Knight-Percival, McMahon; Marshall (Stephen Darby 90), Vincelot (C), Dieng (Billy Clarke 61), Cullen; Wyke, Hiwula (Alex Jones 61).


Subs Not Used - Sattelmaier, Toner, Penney, Devine.


TOWN - Vigouroux; Thompson (C), Rossi-Branco, Conroy, Dabo (Brad Barry 45); Ince, Colkett, Goddard, Gladwin (Luke Norris 72); Obika, Ajose.


Subs Not Used - Henry, Thomas, Rodgers, Starkey, Iandolo.


Referee - Sebastian Stockbridge


BOOKINGS:


BRADFORD CITY - James Meredith, Tony McMahon.


TOWN - Ben Gladwin, Dion Conroy, Charlie Colkett.


ATTENDANCE - 17,916 (202 Town Fans).