Bradford City's self-belief high as Gilliead looks to finish the job

ALEX GILLIEAD admits there was an element of 'unfinished business' when agreeing to return to Bradford City for a second loan spell.
Bradford City's Alex Gilliead moves past Doncaster Rovers' Tommy Rowe.
during the rivals' EFL Cup clash earlier this season.  Picture: Bruce RollinsonBradford City's Alex Gilliead moves past Doncaster Rovers' Tommy Rowe.
during the rivals' EFL Cup clash earlier this season.  Picture: Bruce Rollinson
Bradford City's Alex Gilliead moves past Doncaster Rovers' Tommy Rowe. during the rivals' EFL Cup clash earlier this season. Picture: Bruce Rollinson

The 21-year-old, on the books of Newcastle United after joining as a teenager, has got his league season up and running with back-to-back starts for the Bantams, who netted six goals in taking four points off Walsall and Bristol Rovers.

“It was an easy decision to come back,” said Gilliead, an unused substitute as Bradford lost to Millwall in the League One play-off final at Wembley. “A total no-brainer, if I am honest.

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“I had spoken to the manager at the back end of last season and, obviously, knew the staff and what the place is about. Plus, there is unfinished business after what happened at Wembley as it was disappointing to get beaten.”

Gilliead, in common with everyone in the Bantams camp, was hugely disappointed by the manner of last May’s defeat to Millwall under the Arch.

He added: “On a personal note, it was disappointing not to come on.

“As the game was going on, you are biting your nails.

“It doesn’t matter who you are, you are going to be nervous. I was warming up, itching to get on and when the goal goes in you’re like, ‘Chuck us on’.

Alex Gilliead, right, shows his disappointment as Millwall collect the League One Play-off trophy after beating Bradford at Wembley. in May. Picture: Bruce RollinsonAlex Gilliead, right, shows his disappointment as Millwall collect the League One Play-off trophy after beating Bradford at Wembley. in May. Picture: Bruce Rollinson
Alex Gilliead, right, shows his disappointment as Millwall collect the League One Play-off trophy after beating Bradford at Wembley. in May. Picture: Bruce Rollinson
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“It didn’t happen and a day like that can be all about your luck. But I think this year we will have a right go again.”

The manner of City’s victory over Bristol Rovers added credence to that belief, McCall’s side producing comfortably their best display of the campaign as Charlie Wyke netted a hat-trick.

“We have started the season well with just one defeat and in that game (at home to Blackburn) we could have probably nicked a draw,” he added.

City face tough back-to-back away trips to Peterborough and Oxford United in the coming week. McCall’s side, though, won’t lack confidence after two of their three league and cup away assignments and drawing the other.

Alex Gilliead, right, shows his disappointment as Millwall collect the League One Play-off trophy after beating Bradford at Wembley. in May. Picture: Bruce RollinsonAlex Gilliead, right, shows his disappointment as Millwall collect the League One Play-off trophy after beating Bradford at Wembley. in May. Picture: Bruce Rollinson
Alex Gilliead, right, shows his disappointment as Millwall collect the League One Play-off trophy after beating Bradford at Wembley. in May. Picture: Bruce Rollinson
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Gilliead added: “I have worked with different managers and some will go away and just look to catch the home team on the counter. But this gaffer just wants us to focus on ourselves not them. If we believe we can beat anyone, going away is no different to playing at home.”