Former Bantams player and manager Stuart McCall ‘interested’ in third stint at Valley Parade after Bradford City sack manager Gary Bowyer

Stuart McCall
Stuart McCall
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Stuart McCall is understood to be interested in a third spell as manager of Bradford City, after Gary Bowyer’s time at Valley Parade was brought to a halt yesterday.

The Bantams sacked the 48-year-old amid concerns about whether they would reach the end-of-season League Two play-offs. Saturday’s 3-0 defeat at Oldham Athletic saw them drop out of the top seven for the first time since September.

Gary Bowyer

Gary Bowyer

Bradford have won three of their last 18 games in all competitions, and it was the second weekend running they had lost 3-0 away from home.

“Gary built a squad over the summer that has proven it is capable of competing at the right end of Sky Bet League Two,” read a statement from interim chief executive, Julian Rhodes.

“However, over the course of the last few months, results have undoubtedly declined. In view of recent events, we felt a change was necessary in order to compete for a play-off place.”

The club’s German owners sacked McCall two years ago on Friday, with the Bantams sixth in League One. Since then they have had six managers and a relegation Bowyer was unable to avert after taking charge last March.

Neil Warnock

Neil Warnock

McCall was quickly installed as the bookmakers’ joint favourite for the job, along with Neil Warnock, and he is thought to be willing to bury the hatchet to come to the aid of a club where he is widely regarded as a legend.

The Leeds-born midfielder started his playing career at Valley Parade and made 413 appearances in all competitions across two spells with the club, scoring 46 goals. Between time he played for Everton, Rangers and Scotland, scoring twice in the 1989 FA Cup final.

In 2007, after spells as Chris Hutchings’ assistant and Warnock’s at Sheffield United, plus two matches as Valley Parade caretaker manager, Rhodes gave McCall his dream job.

They finished 10th and ninth in League Two, and in February 2010 he resigned with them 16th. He gave up a job on Scotland’s coaching staff to return in 2016, and took them to the League One play-off final in his first season, but was sacked after six straight defeats in February 2018.

Sheffield-born Warnock has held 16 managerial jobs, including at Scarborough, Huddersfield Town, Sheffield United, Leeds United and Rotherham United. The 71-year-old has been out of work since leaving Cardiff City in November.

Former Luton Town boss Nathan Jones, sacked by Stoke City in the autumn, also features highly in the betting odds.