NEW BOY OBIKA IS RIGHT AT HOME
JONATHAN Obika hit the ground running in a Swindon shirt but a debut double for the Robins new boy was just an added extra for delighted manager Mark Cooper.
Swindon responded to an early barrage, in which Bradford had a penalty saved, before trailing through a Louis Thompson own goal.
But some woeful City defending allowed the opportunistic Obika to net twice and seal the three points for the visitors – and the manager believes they deserved nothing less.
He said: “I felt we had enough chances to win the game more comfortably but we didn’t take them.
“When you don’t you always leave your susceptible to pressure at the other end of the pitch, but we defended pretty well.
“Some of the football was very, very good again. Some of the link play and the interplay to get behind the Bradford midfield and running at the back four was outstanding.
“We’ve got some good young footballers and they can hurt teams at times. It was a good start for Jonathan Obika and hopefully he can follow that up.”
It looked as though Bradford were going to enjoy a walkover early on, with a series of sloppy passes from Swindon resulting in keeper Wes Foderingham bringing down Billy Clarke just two minutes in.
Foderingham saved Alan Sheehan’s resultant spot kick, but was powerless eight minutes later when Louis Thompson turned Mark Yeates’ cross into his own goal under pressure from Jason Kennedy. That woke the Robins up and they were the better team for the rest of the game, though their goals were exploitative of some terrible City defending.
Both came from debutant Obika, signed from Tottenham on transfer deadline day, and he’s unlikely to score many easier goals for Swindon. The striker showed good reflexes for the first, throwing himself onto Michael Smith’s goal-bound header from Bradley Smith’s corner to wrong-foot keeper Jordan Pickford.
Another corner provided the second just before the interval, with Nathan Byrne’s delivery half-cleared, allowing an unchallenged Obika to hammer into the top corner.
Swindon’s dominance continued after the break, with Massimo Luongo – who made his first start for Australia on Tuesday – pulling the strings.
Bradford boss Phil Parkinson finally made a much-needed change to the Bantams’ shape with 25 minutes to go, but the hosts were unable to find a way through. And to make matters worse, Sheehan was sent off in injury time for punching Raphael Rossi Branco.
Parkinson said:“It looked to me as if Alan’s just gone over and punched him. I can’t be sure, but it’s unacceptable if he’s done that.
“We’ve had a poor result but it makes it a really bad day when one of your player loses his discipline. It’s unacceptable and Alan will be fined the maximum he can.
“Overall the way we played was a long, long way ahead of where we were last week at Yeovil, but we can’t keep conceding goals the way we’ve done. Four of the last five have been from set plays.”
NEW HERO: Swindon’s Jonathan Obika celebrates his winning goal STAR MAN MASSI MO O LUONG