Gary Bowyer stays with Bradford City looking to create team with ‘pace and power’

Manager Gary Bowyer has signed a deal that will keep him with Bradford City until 2021 (Picture: Simon Hulme).
Manager Gary Bowyer has signed a deal that will keep him with Bradford City until 2021 (Picture: Simon Hulme).
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BRADFORD CITY interim chief executive Julian Rhodes believes Gary Bowyer’s tremendous work ethic will help bring about a return to happier times after the club’s manager signed a new two-year deal.

The 47-year-old, appointed initially only until the end of this season, has committed his future to the Bantams until 2021.

City are odds on to be relegated after a dismal campaign, but Rhodes believes the former Blackburn Rovers and Blackpool manager agreeing to stay is a big step towards turning things around.

“We had to make sure we are ready for the close season,” said the former Bradford owner to The Yorkshire Post. “There is a lot of work to be done regardless of what division we are in. We cannot kid ourselves about that.

“Gary has a lot of experience at both League One and League Two level. We are going to give everything to try and stay in the division, but obviously things do not look good right now.

“If the worst does happen Gary has experience of bringing a team back up from League Two. He wants to make us an exciting team to watch, with plenty of pace and power.

“He is already working very hard on that, proving to us he is clearly someone who likes to roll his sleeves up. Gary has been out and about scouting a lot of games lately, looking for players capable of playing at either League One or League Two level.”

Bowyer led Blackpool to promotion from League Two in 2017 having been parachuted in the previous summer after relegation.

His appointment on a permanent basis is one of several that Rhodes hopes to make after agreeing to extend his own stay into the summer in an attempt to put the club back on a more stable footing.

Rhodes, brought back by owner Stefan Rupp shortly before Christmas, added: “There are a few other appointments that need to be made for the good of the club.

“People who can help on the commercial side of the club, boosting income. The lower down you are in football the harder it is to generate income.

“But sorting out Gary’s future was the biggest one. We are old fashioned at this club in that the manager does the recruitment. He works with the board, of course, but all signings will be his. That is the only way to operate.”

Bradford are six points adrift of safety with just seven games remaining. Bowyer is the third manager to take charge of the team this term.