RECORD BREAKING BANTAMS DELIVER
BRILLIANT Bradford set a new club record as they closed further in on the League One play-offs with a comfortable win at Scunthorpe.
Tony McMahon’s first-half penalty and a stunning strike from full-back Greg Leigh earned the Bantams the victory and stretched their unbeaten league run to eight games.
But it was a sixth successive clean sheet – 578 minutes without conceding a goal – which earned City’s class of 2015 a place in the history books, surpassing the previous five-game best achieved in 1954.
“I’m pleased with the record, it was there to be broken and when you’ve got the five you want to go on and get the next one because it’s a great achievement,” beamed their boss Phil Parkinson.
“Our goalkeeper, Ben Williams, had to pull off a fantastic save in the first half to keep it in tact. It was truly magnificent.
“We have to keep our feet on the ground and look forward to the next game, but if you keep clean sheets you’re going to win games.
“We’ve got a resilience about us and that’s not just down to the back four. It starts with the work ethic of the front two and the midfield. That’s the reason we’ve been hard to break down.
“But our attacking play was also great.We scored two and I thought we could have had more.”
The match had been an end to end affair before McMahon had the opportunity to score from the spot in the 28th minute, a penalty awarded when Gary McSheffrey and Kyel Reid tangled while chasing for the ball after a shot had been palmed away by home keeper Luke Daniels.
The hosts’ best chance of the opening 45 minutes had come shortly before the deadlock was broken. It fell to Neal Bishop at the back post, but his powerful effort was brilliantly saved and impressively held by visiting stopper Williams as he travelled across his line.
Scunthorpe’s only real threat of a response before the break came in stoppage time – a volley that flew not too far wide from Madden – but really the Iron struggled for ideas and composure when they got on the ball in and around the final third.
They needed a good start to the second half. But instead it was the in-form visitors who came out firing.
Striker Jordan Bowery, making his debut on loan from Rotherham United, forced Daniels into another smart save, but the Scunthorpe stopper had no answer to Leigh’s brilliant goal in the 52nd minute, which capped some fine Bradford build-up play.
The Iron briefly threatened following the introduction of Luke Williams and Kevin van Veen from the bench, but in truth could have no complaints about the final scoreline.
“I’m disappointed and frustrated.We were poor and Bradford were better than us – which we don’t often say here,” admitted Iron boss Mark Robins.
“But having said all that, we could have been talking about something different had we taken our chances.
“We forced their keeper into a couple of good saves.”
SPOT ON: Bradford City defender Anthony McMahon opens the scoring with a penalty