THE top four in League One have started to open up a decent gap on the chasing pack, but Bradford City manager Stuart McCall insists it is far too early to suggest promotion will be contested by just that quartet.
City are the fourth of those sides who have been setting the pace, McCall’s side being five points clear of Rochdale in fifth place.
The Bantams are two points adrift of both Bolton Wanderers and Sheffield United, while Scunthorpe United are a further six points clear at the top.
Despite that, McCall is adamant the race for automatic promotion in the third tier is far from a closed shop.
“It is far too early to say how things will pan out,” said the City chief ahead of today’s trip to Swindon Town, his side’s 20th league game of the season.
“There are so many strong sides in this division. Look at Millwall, they have been on a good run lately and look dangerous. There are another couple like that, too.
“I have also been listening to a few of the other managers at the top, the likes of Chris Wilder and Phil Parkinson, and they say that January will be important.
“Some of the big hitters sound ready to flex their muscles so we will have to see how that goes.
“All we can do is focus on ourselves. We are happy to be in and around the top, but there is a lot of work to do. We can’t look too far ahead. Swindon is our only focus right now.”
City head to the County Ground buoyed by the midweek win at home to Northampton Town, which was a perfect response to last weekend’s 3-0 loss at Southend United.
“It was an important win for us,” said McCall about a three points earned by James Hanson’s second-half header. “We deserved it, too.
“Southend was disappointing in terms of the result, even if the scoreline was not justified.
“We had more chances there than when we won at Wimbledon, but that is just how it is. We wanted three points in midweek and the challenge is to do the same at Swindon.”