TWELVE months ago, the curtain came down on Bradford City’s season at Glanford Park with a 1-1 draw that left the club a disappointing 11th in League One.
Simon Grayson, then in charge but destined to walk away a few days later, stressed how the summer had to bring “a big turnaround with the squad”.
On-loan defender Stephen Warnock, meanwhile, also chose his last game before retirement to call on the Bantams board to splash the cash. “The chairman needs to dig deep into his pockets and back the manager,” he told this newspaper.
City did, indeed, deliver on both those demands. This much is clear from the Bantams having not only a wage budget this season that is the fourth highest in the division but also only
Nathaniel Knight-Percival from the starting XI at Scunthorpe still being involved this time around.
Sadly for a support base who will be watching their football in League Two come August, said recruitment was wholly inadequate.
Left to pick up the pieces is Gary Bowyer, who faces a mighty rebuilding job in the coming weeks.
“It is an exciting time for me at this moment in time as I try to piece something together,” said the 47-year-old, who on Thursday fielded more than 70 calls from agents, clubs and fellow managers.
“But we also have a duty to be right with all the other teams in the league. We have to go and have a right, good go at Scunthorpe.
“They are probably saying the same about them as us. It (Scunthorpe’s relegation fight) all stems back to getting rid of Graham (Alexander) when still in the play-offs.
“This is our last away game of the season and I imagine we will have a good following. We have to try give them something to cheer.”