McMAHON: THE BOARD MUST ACT
JOHN McMahon described Tranmere’s relegation as his lowest moment in football after ten-man Rovers succumbed to two late goals as Bradford hammered the final nails in their coffin.
Jon Stead and Aaron McLean both scored in the last nine minutes to leave McMahon challenging the Tranmere board to implement foundations at the club he says have proved ultimately responsible for their downfall.
Matthew Pennington had put Rovers ahead but the game changed when Junior Brown was sent off allowing City to break the hearts of Tranmere fans as they resigned themselves to English football’s fourth tier.
“It is devastating,” caretaker manager McMahon said. “This is my lowest moment in football. It really hurts.
“We got the goal we needed and until the sending off I thought we were in control.
“But it isn’t just about this game it has been since the start of the season.
“As a football club we now need to review the structure of how we do things from top to bottom.
“The board need to put that in place because without those foundations we can’t grow and that has been the problem for a number of seasons now.”
Everton loanee Pennington watched his seventh minute shot go through the hands of Bradford goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin before dropping into the net as Tranmere got exactly the start they wanted.
Jason Mooney’s one-handed reflex stop in the Rovers goal denied McLean at point-blank range immediately after while Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro drilled a strike wide for Tranmere.
Tempers boiled over when the two benches clashed after Rovers striker Ryan Lowe appeared to be pushed inside the Bradford technical area.
And things erupted further when Brown received a straight red card for a 31st-minute challenge on Nathan Doyle.
Stead fired over for Bradford eight minutes into the secondhalf but he did level matters to break Tranmere hearts with a shot which deflected beyond Mooney from on 81 minutes before McLean sealed matters three minutes from time after Akpa Akpro wasted a chance to win it for Rovers.
Bradford finished the season in 11th place and boss Phil Parkinson said: “We are happy to finish in the top half of the table in our first season back at this level. It is a tremendous achievement for everyone involved with the club.
“My commiserations go to Tranmere because it is a terrific football club. For us, we have to look to progress again next season.
“It will be a challenging summer to get a squad in place that will enable us to do that. We want to keep our best players and sit down with those who are out of contract and I am confident we will improve the
FIGHTING THE TEARS: Max Power looks dejected as Tranmere are relegated
MARCHING ORDERS: Junior Brown is sent off
STAR MAN JASON KOUMA