Bradford City sign goalkeeper Will Huffer but Sam Hornby will be their new No 1

Bradford City have signed Will Huffer from neighbours Park Avenue to provide back-up to Sam Hornby, and now they will try to push ahead with a deal for Leeds United's Jordan Stevens.

ARRIVAL: Will Huffer has made the short move from Bradford (Park Avenue) to Bradford City

The Bantams moved quickly for 22-year-old Elland Road product Huffer after captain Richard O'Donnell was ruled out for up to three months with a torn thigh.

Rather than look for a new first-choice stopper, they have put their faith in Hornby, and brought in Huffer on a deal which runs until the end of the season.

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City's joint interim manager Mark Trueman described Huffer as “a talented young goalkeeper who was rated very highly at Leeds United, and we are looking forward to seeing what he can do here.”

Hornby came in for his City debut, and only his 12th senior appearance in all, and kept a clean sheet against former club Port Vale, and will keep the job for Saturday's League Two trip to Scunthorpe United, Trueman's colleague Conor Sellars confirmed before Huffer's arrival.

“For us at the minute Sam is going to be No1 and I think he deserves that opportunity,” he said.

“Rich is a massive person for the club and his team-mates and for us as staff. It's not nice for him but football is like that and he's got to focus on his recovery and support the boys. It's an opportunity for Sam to prove himself. I thought he was good in the last game and get a clean sheet so he's got to keep on being positive, keep on trying to keep clean sheets and perform well.”

Huffer only joined Bradford (Park Avenue) in November, having had a loan spell at Barnet in 2019.

Leeds have recalled Stevens from a loan at Swindon Town in the face of interest from Bradford and Salford City. The 20-year-old's contract expires in the summer.

“Jordan's somebody we're aware of,” said Sellars, who like Trueman has stepped up from the academy since Stuart McCall's sacking. “He's been at Leeds for a few years and we've watched him in their under-23s and at Swindon as well. He's definitely a player we rate.

“We've talked about strengthening, whether that's the starting line-up or impact players. I definitely think we've got areas we can improve, especially impact players, and different types of wingers are something we're looking to invest in.”

Bradford will speak with parent club Wolverhampton Wanderers about on-loan striker Austin Samuels. The 20-year-old has been limited to six league starts this season, the last of his two goals coming in the 7-0 FA Cup win at Tonbridge Angels in November.

The return to fitness of Lee Novak, who has taken the captain's armband in O'Donnell's absence, has pushed him further down the pecking order.

“We're monitoring Austin, he's come in on loan and we'll see how he does and go from there,” said Sellars. “We've got a good relationship with Wolves and we've got to make sure we what happens next is right for us and Wolves as well.

“Like any club, people come in, people come out. We're no different. We'll see what happens.

“It does happen in football and we're no different.

“Myself and Mark are learning. Lee (Turnbull, City's head of recruitment) has been fantastic, as well as other people in the building, working hard to make sure the players we've identified are the right ones for the club.

“The strategy to make that happen is key. We're happy with where we are right now and we're looking to move forward and get deals over the line.”

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