Tie soaked in his­tory – but not in goals

The Football League Paper - - FA CUP THIRD ROUND - By Jamie Bow­man

BOTH Bury and Brad­ford went into the hat for Mon­day evening’s fourth round draw af­ter the League One ri­vals failed to find the net at a soak­ing Gigg Lane.

With three FA Cup tri­umphs be­tween them – al­though Brad­ford’s 1911 win is the most re­cent – and mem­o­ries still fresh of the Ban­tams’ out­stand­ing run in last year’s com­pe­ti­tion, this was a game with his­tory on its side if not the con­di­tions, as both sides strug­gled af­ter a first half that promised more.

Be­moan­ing his side’s waste­ful­ness af­ter they missed a host of chances, Brad­ford as­sis­tant man­ager Steve Parkin said:“It was a typ­i­cal Cup tie with a heavy pitch and both teams com­mit­ted.

“On an­other day we could have scored two or three but all things be­ing equal it was a fair re­sult.”

Cur­rently train­ing at a tem­po­rary venue in Leeds af­ter re­cent flood­ing forced the clo­sure of their Ap­per­ley Bridge base, Parkin ad­mit­ted it had not been easy for his play­ers.

“There were cer­tain aspects of our prepa­ra­tion that we couldn’t do any­thing about but the lads have been bril­liant,” he said.“It was a whole-hearted per­for­mance.”

Roared on by their huge away fol­low­ing who oc­cu­pied both ends of Gigg Lane, Brad­ford had the bet­ter of the open­ing ex­changes. But be­fore the vis­i­tors could take ad­van­tage the game was dis­rupted by a lengthy stop­page fol­low­ing a clash of heads which re­sulted in Bury mid­fielder Craig Jones be­ing car­ried off.

The hosts, who were look­ing to book a place in the fourth round for only the se­cond time in 16 years, be­gan to gain a foothold but it was the Ban­tams who came clos­est to open­ing the scor­ing when Tony McMa­hon’s low free-kick to­tally de­ceived debu­tant goal­keeper Ian Lawlor but re­bounded off the post.

The best move of the half should have re­sulted in Bury tak­ing the lead on 41 min­utes when Danny Mayor squared for Andy Tutte, but he failed to chal­lenge Ben Wil­liams with a weak shot. Gary Lid­dle missed a fine chance to win it for the York­shire out­fit in the se­cond half but some­how headed wide from the ex­cel­lent Kyel Reid’s pin­point cross, be­fore James Han­son wasted an­other gilt-edged op­por­tu­nity in in­jury time.

Bury man­ager David Fl­itcroft said:“We were very brave first half and got the ball down well.We carved them up quite a few times.

“There were some real gilt-edged chances late on that went wasted and I didn’t ex­pect it to be goal­less as it was quite a vi­brant game.”


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