FA Cup: Bantams earn replay, but Halifax’s dream is ended

FC Halifax  Town manager Darren Kelly.
 Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe.FC Halifax  Town manager Darren Kelly.
 Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe.
FC Halifax Town manager Darren Kelly. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe.
PHIL PARKINSON admitted Bradford City’s relief at being in tonight’s FA Cup second round draw after being held by non-League Aldershot Town.

The Bantams ground out a goalless draw to avoid joining Barnsley in being dumped out of the competition by Conference opposition.

Lee Johnson’s Reds lost at Altrincham on Saturday in the only upset involving a Yorkshire side, though Bradford came close with goalkeeper Ben Williams having to pull off a wonder save to deny Jim Stevenson.

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Parkinson said: “It was a very difficult game, which we knew it would be. Horrible conditions, and really blustery. In the first half, we were average at best.

Phil Parkinson.Phil Parkinson.
Phil Parkinson.

“But we were much better in the second half. We are still in the hat.”

City captain Stephen Darby, part of the side that beat Chelsea and Sunderland in the Cup last season, added: “There were a few upsets this weekend and we had to make sure we weren’t one of them.”

Also in action yesterday were FC Halifax Town, whose own hopes of an upset were dashed by Wycombe Wanderers.

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In front of a season-high attendance of 1,789, the Shaymen lost 4-0 to the League Two outfit.

Despite that, manager Darren Kelly felt there were plenty of positives to take out of a game that saw the Chairboys score twice late on.

Kelly said: “I had been hoping for a little fairytale in the FA Cup but it wasn’t to be.

“For long spells, I felt we looked solid. At times, I don’t think you would have known who were the Football League club.”

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Halifax prop up the National League after a dreadful opening three months of the season. However, Kelly added: “We are part-time and our players work very hard in the day. It can make things difficult.

“If we can reproduce that in the league and add that winning mentality, I think we will be unstoppable.

“We take the positives from that, in that if we perform like that and add the end product then we will be fine.”