AFTER the miserable decade or so that Bradford City have endured, the club’s supporters could be forgiven for shouting from the rooftops right now.
The Bantams sit fifth in League Two, their highest position since the spring of 2009 when Stuart McCall was in his second season as manager, and hopes are high among the Valley Parade faithful that this could finally be their year.
If that proves to be the case, it will finally end a spiral of decline that has seen City suffer three relegations and two stints in administration since 2001.
Phil Parkinson, as manager, is understandably pleased by a start that has yielded 13 points from seven games.
But what he won’t be doing is getting swept along with the feel-good factor that has been flowing through Bradfordians since Tuesday’s 3-1 victory over Morecambe, the club’s fourth straight home win this term and seventh going back to last season.
Parkinson said: “We will keep our counsel, both the staff and the players.
“It is not our style to shout our mouths off and say we are going to do this and that.
“Instead, we are just focusing on each game as it comes round. This is a long, long season. We are pleased with how things are going, and particularly with how we played on Tuesday. That was a very pleasing performance from my perspective.
“But the Morecambe game is gone now and we have to focus on Oxford.”
Chris Wilder’s side started the season with three straight wins but have since come a cropper courtesy of four consecutive defeats.
The U’s sit 16th in the table following the 2-1 midweek loss at Cheltenham Town.
He said: “Oxford were one of the teams fancied to do well before the season started.
“They then had a good start. The 4-0 loss (at Burton last weekend) will have come as a blow but, sometimes, results like that come along. We had a similar one at Rotherham recently but bounced back.
“Oxford will be looking to do the same. Chris is a good friend of mine and someone I have known for a long time. I really hope things turn round for him, though only after this weekend’s game against us.”