Bradford City v Northampton Town: Aiming to get back on track at Valley Parade

STRIKING BACK: Bradford City boss Stuart McCall.   Picture: Tony Johnson.
STRIKING BACK: Bradford City boss Stuart McCall. Picture: Tony Johnson.
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ON away form alone, Bradford City would have one foot in the Championship.

Thirteen games on the road have yielded 29 points, a tally no other club in the Football League can beat.

At Valley Parade, however, things have been rather different with the Bantams having already suffered six defeats in front of their own fans this season.

Just Northampton Town and Bury, both in the bottom four, have lost more on home soil.

As the struggling Cobblers head to the West Riding today, City must hope it is a case of new year, new start.

Manager Stuart McCall, for his part, is demanding a response from his players after the lame manner of last weekend’s FA Cup third-round exit at Yeovil Town.

Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink: Unhappy experience at Bradford.

Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink: Unhappy experience at Bradford.

Bradford were poor against the League Two side, who a couple of days after their 2-0 triumph over the Yorkshire side were celebrating a plum tie at home to Manchester United in the next round.

“It was a difficult start to the week, but the hangover is finished now,” said McCall about that unusually tepid loss to the Glovers.

“We know the Yeovil performance was unacceptable, but the only way to move on from it now is by putting in a good performance against Northampton.

“The lads are aware they let everyone down last weekend, but there is no better way to respond than coming back with a strong display at home in front of your own supporters.”

We know the Yeovil performance was unacceptable, but the only way to move on from it now is by putting in a good performance against Northampton.

Bradford City manager, Stuart McCall

Determined to add to City’s woes on home soil will be Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, the Northampton manager.

He famously punched the roof of the away dugout at Valley Parade when substituted during Chelsea’s 2-0 loss in the Premier League just a few months into the new Millennium.

If former Leeds striker Hasselbaink cuts a similarly frustrated figure come full-time, Bradford will have done their job.

“We must look to reproduce that same sort of performance again against Northampton,” said McCall about the 3-2 home win over Oxford United that rounded off 2017 on a high.

“We have some good positive memories from our last game on home soil.”