Change of transfer tack forced on us, says Bradford boss Stuart McCall

Bradford City manager Stuart McCall (Picture: Scott Merrylees).
Bradford City manager Stuart McCall (Picture: Scott Merrylees).
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MANAGER Stuart McCall admits a challenging summer has led to Bradford City’s new owners having to make a temporary shift in approach towards transfer windows.

The Bantams were taken over by German investors Edin Rahic and Stefan Rupp at the start of the summer.

Part of the duo’s philosophy on taking charge at Valley Parade was to develop promising young talent, a view which is shared by McCall.

However, such were the shortage of numbers at the club – there was a double digit number of departures, including loanees Reece Burke, Josh Cullen, Kyel Reid and Lee Evans – that changes had to be made.

“The mindset has had to change a little bit,” said McCall.

“The owners came in with a long-term strategy of buying young ones and developing them.

“I understand that. Rather than pay for loanees and develop them for other clubs, much better to develop your own talent.

“The owners are not here to make a quick buck. They took a long time to decide which was the best club for them and this is a long term project.

“In an ideal world, they wanted to buy those young lads.

“But, at the moment, it is about getting people in for the here and now.

“The long-term strategy can kick in with the next window and the one after that. The owners get that and have backed that.

“It may look like we have backtracked on what was originally said, but it isn’t. Just a realisation of where we are at.

“Short term, our priority changed to get players in now. This type of window won’t happen again.”

As if to underline this shift in thinking, Matthew Kilgallon, 32, became City’s latest signing earlier this week on a one-year deal.

The former Leeds United and Sheffield United defender was released by Blackburn Rovers last season. He will bolster a defence that is due to be without captain Stephen Darby and Rory McArdle until September due to injury.

“You have to know who comes in can play in front of 16,000 every week” said McCall, who succeeded Phil Parkinson in June.

“They need to be able to handle it. That is why I say age isn’t a thing for me. I came back here at 34 as a player and then went on to join Sheffield United at 38.”