A TOPSY-TURVY weekend that ended with Simon Grayson installed as Bradford City’s new manager also saw Greg Abbott, the club’s head of recruitment, describe being held to a draw by bottom club Bury as a “morsel of consolation”.
The Bantams, reduced to 10 men by Matthew Kilgallon’s dismissal, ended a six-game losing run, but the stoppage time equaliser that rescued a point for the Shakers left Abbott, in temporary charge of the team, feeling hugely frustrated.
City twice held the lead, but George Miller’s late leveller means defeat at Charlton Athletic tomorrow night as Grayson makes his bow in the dugout would see the West Yorkshire club fall out of the top six for the first time since August.
Speaking before Grayson yesterday became the first manager to take charge of Leeds United, Huddersfield Town and Bradford City, Abbott, still “raw” at seeing McCall, his friend and one-time Bradford team-mate, lose his job on the back of that awful run, said: “It is 2-2 and maybe, being down to ten men, the moral victory goes to our lads, but it doesn’t feel like that at the moment.
“The club are not overjoyed, but we stopped that (losing run) and it’s a slim morsel of consolation.
“The goals could have been avoided, but after the week the players have had they can stand up and take a bow.
“The attitude and commitment was first-class.”
Tim Dieng put Bradford ahead in the 57th minute, turning Alex Gilliead’s shot into the net,
The lead, however, lasted a mere five minutes as Nathan Cameron scored from the rebound after a header from former Bradford striker James Hanson, on as a substitute, was cleared off the line.
City went down to 10 men in the 79th minute when defender Kilgallon was sent off for a second bookable offence, but substitute Shay McCartan restored their lead in the 89th minute after chasing down substitute Nat Knight-Percival’s long clearance. However, Miller snatched a point for the visitors with a close-range header in the fifth minute of stoppage-time.
Bradford City: Doyle, McMahon, McGowan, Kilgallon (Knight-Percival 82), Chicksen, Gilliaead, Dieng, Vincelot, Robinson (Taylor 65), Wyke, Poleon (McCartan 74). Unused substitutes: Raeder (gk), Warnock, Guy, Gibson.
Bury: Ripley, Edwards, Cameron, Clarke (Maguire 90+4), Leigh, Danns (Tutte 90+3)), Laurent, Ismail (Hanson 59), Bunn, Mayor, Miller. Unused substitutes: Murphy (gk), Thompson, Dawson, Styles.
Referee: Sebastian Stockbridge (Durham).