COME the weekend and Bradford City’s final day assignment at Scunthorpe United, envy will be a hard emotion to fight for those sporting claret and amber.
The Iron booked their place in the play-offs on Tuesday night in front of the live Sky cameras, just as City’s home campaign was limping to a conclusion with a draw against strugglers Walsall.
Rotherham United are likely to await Scunthorpe in the semi-finals, while Bradford seem condemned to a summer of ‘what ifs?’ and ‘if onlys’.
For 90 minutes on Saturday evening, however, Shay McCartan believes that can be put aside as the Yorkshire side look to end what has been a hugely disappointing campaign on something of a high.
“We have to be professional,” said the Northern Irishman, signed last summer from Accrington Stanley. “It will be a different atmosphere because they are cemented in the play-offs. But we have to work hard and try to get the three points for the away fans coming. To finish a season losing games is horrible.”
One big decision that has to be made amid the recriminations over just where the season went wrong concerns the future of Simon Grayson, who signed a deal until the end of season when succeeding Stuart McCall in February.
Budgets, recruitment and the club’s infrastructure are all likely to play a part in whether someone with four promotions from League One on his CV sticks around.
“We want him to stay but obviously it is up to the gaffer what he wants to do,” added McCartan.
“I think he has done well. It was hard for him when he came in because we were so low in confidence and he was trying to put his style on us.
“But I think we got there in the end and the players are all behind the gaffer. We want him to be here next year.”
We want him to stay but obviously it is up to the gaffer what he wants to do.Shay McCartan