Caldwell: Jacobs is real cracker
WIGAN boss Gary Caldwell hailed Michael Jacobs’ contribution as the Latics extended their unbeaten league run to eight games, while Bradford’s winning run was halted at three.
Jacobs was Wigan’s most potent player through the middle in the first half, before switching to a wide role and scored the opening goal with a curling effort.
Bradford pulled level through James Hanson’s header ten minutes later.
But Caldwell was pleased to take a point from an open game in which both sides showed plenty of threat and intensity.
He said: “When you come here you know you’re going to be put under pressure. You’re going to have to defend set pieces and I thought we defended 99 per cent of them well but got done by one late on.
“We stood up to a lot of what Bradford threw at us, so I think a draw was a fair result in the end.
“Michael’s shown many times this year the ability he’s got. He’s improving all the time and is starting to add goals to his game.
“It was a great goal he got. He created a lot of problems and deserved it.”
One of Jacobs’ runs posed Ben Williams with his first problem of the day, but he got down well to push Jacobs’ 20-yard effort just wide.
That came moments after Bradford should have taken the lead through Rory McArdle, who rose well to meet Reece Burke’s excellent cross but headed off target.
That turned into something of a first-half theme for Bradford, who were unable to capitalise on any of six corners in the space of four first-half minutes.
Wigan went 3-4-3 just before the break to nullify Bradford’s crossing threat.
However, Tony McMahon tried to find a way around that by hitting a dangerous half-volley towards goal from out wide that Jussi Jaaskelainen pushed away.
The visitors went ahead on 53 minutes, ignoring Hanson – who took a knee to the thigh in an aerial duel with David Perkins – and storming into the Bantams box, with Jacobs applying the final touch.
Hanson then got retribution with the equaliser as Bradford finally converted one of McMahon’s corners.
Phil Parkinson was critical of the referee’s decision to let play continue after that knock to Hanson.
He said: “It was a definite foul. Hanson’s in the dressing room with a bag of ice on his thigh.
“We could have done better ourselves to prevent it after that, but it was a poor refereeing moment.”
But the Bantams boss was nevertheless also satisfied to have a share the spoils.
The former Charlton Athletic boss added: “It was an excellent game, a tight game.
“They’re a good side with an array of talent, but we matched them.
“I was pleased with the way we responded after the goal.
“I think the squad mentality and the spirit in the squad is where we want it now.
“Maybe four or five weeks ago we’d have let that goal affect us, but here we rolled our sleeves up and went again.”
Wigan are up to fifth in the table, while Bradford are down to 14th.
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