Coventry v Bradford City: Bradford must prey on unusual mood ‘at’ Coventry

Phil Parkinson.
Phil Parkinson.
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PHIL PARKINSON has urged Bradford City to capitalise tonight on what is invariably a “surreal” atmosphere at Coventry City ‘home” games.

The Sky Blues moved into Northampton’s Sixfields Stadium last summer after a rent row led the club to vacate the Ricoh Stadium.

Supporters angry at the move have since boycotted fixtures, which has left Coventry with the lowest average attendance in League One.

An average of just 2,222 fans have watched those ‘home’ games, a figure dwarfed by many clubs in the basement division.

Parkinson said: “I have watched Coventry quite a few times in Northampton this season, mainly because a lot of their games have been on Sunday afternoon to avoid a clash with Northampton.

“I was also there last Wednesday. The atmosphere is a bit surreal and it is up to us to make the most of that by imposing ourselves on the game.

“To be fair to Coventry, they have done well at home. They have made the best of things in what must be a difficult situation. But we can turn the lack of atmosphere to our advantage.”

City travel down the M1 buoyed by the weekend win at promotion-chasing Leyton Orient.

Parkinson’s men were full value for their 1-0 triumph with a committed defensive display being capped by Aaron Mclean’s clinical finish.

The Bradford chief said: “It was a big win for us. Going to a team sitting third in the league and coming away with all three points was a big achievement.

“We fully deserved the win, too. The longer the game went on, the stronger we became. We could have extended our lead.

“The key now is pushing on. There is no point taking a step forward and then stepping backwards straight afterwards.

“Coventry have won twice lately so it won’t be easy. That will have lifted their spirits.”

James Hanson is again expected to miss out tonight through injury, meaning Huddersfield Town loanee Jonathan Stead will once more lead the attack alongside Mclean.

Adam Drury is also out and will join Nathan Doyle on the sidelines.

Last six games: Coventry City LLDLWW, Bradford City LWDLLW.

Last time: Coventry City 0 Bradford City 0; November 5, 2003; Championship.

Referee: L Probert (Wiltshire).