Parkinson tribute to strength of his squad

PHIL PARKINSON admits his Bradford City side deserve a glowing half-term report.

The Bantams have, in many ways, been the standout story of the Football League with some amazing Cup performances being interspersed with a push for promotion.

City are due to play their 34th game today when Accrington Stanley come to Valley Parade, an arduous enough schedule for a Premier League outfit never mind one competing in the fourth tier of English football.

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It is for that reason Parkinson believes his players deserve a huge pat on the back.

He said: “I have to be pleased with how things have gone. The Cup performances have been great, while we have done well in the league and got ourselves in a promising position.

“The key now is pushing on and I believe this squad has the hunger to do just that. Christmas brings a busy schedule but the difference is every other team in League Two is in the same boat.”

City’s busy programme has been made all the more difficult by injuries with Luke Oliver out for the season and Kyel Reid having missed 11 weeks before his recent return.

Andrew Davies, the club’s marquee signing of last summer who is due back in the New Year, is another who has been out long-term and Parkinson added: “We have to give the lads who have come in credit for what they have achieved. To lose two players (Davies and Oliver) like we did in the same game against Burton and then respond like we have is testament to the squad.

“I don’t think any other squad could have lost players of the calibre of Davies and Oliver, and done what we have.”

Last six games: Bradford City DWWDDL, Accrington Stanley DLDLLD.

Referee: G Eltrincham (Tyne & Wear).

Last time: Bradford City 1 Accrington Stanley 1; March 3, 2012; League Two.