Loan star Ladapo is the hero for Hurst

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE - By Les Scott

A FIRST-HALF goal from on-loan Crys­tal Palace striker Fred­die Ladapo gave im­prov­ing Shrews­bury a de­served win against a Brad­ford City side that lacked a killer punch.

Shrews­bury have con­ceded just one goal at home since Paul Hurst took the reigns in Oc­to­ber and this lat­est win de­lighted the Shrews boss, al­beit he found it a ner­vous watch.

“When you are pro­tect­ing a one-goal lead against a team like Brad­ford City it is never go­ing to be an en­joy­able, re­lax­ing watch for a man­ager,” said Hurst.

“I thought we were ex­cel­lent and cre­ated the best chances. It’s dis­ap­point­ing to get three points and drop into the rel­e­ga­tion places but, gen­er­ally speak­ing, we feel we are for­ever de­vel­op­ing and go­ing in the right di­rec­tion.

“We pushed higher up here to try and help Fred­die Ladapo on his home de­but, es­pe­cially in the sec­ond-half. Fred­die did well, he should have given us the lead ear­lier but he made up for it.

“Not being dis­re­spect­ful to any­one, for us to get re­sults we have to have ev­ery player pro­duc­ing a per­for­mance and I felt we did that here.”

Brad­ford en­joyed the lion’s share of the play in the first pe­riod but found the home de­fence in un­com­pro­mis­ing mood. The clos­est City came to open­ing their ac­count was a sting­ing shot from dan­ger­man Mark Mar­shall, which was palmed away by Jayson Leutwiler.

The Shrews lacked City’s qual­ity and slick play but were full of ef­fort and en­deav­our and took the lead just be­fore the break. Nathaniel Knight-Per­ci­val’s stum­ble al­lowed Louis Dodds to break clear and when the for­mer Port Vale striker’s shot was par­ried by Colin Doyle, Ladapo was on hand to side foot home.

The Shrews had the up­per hand in the sec­ond pe­riod and the clos­est City came to an equaliser was Tony McMa­hon’s free-kick which was palmed to safety by Leutwiler. At the other end, a fab­u­lous ball from the left by Ladapo found Shaun Whalley un­marked on the right, but the home sub­sti­tute side-footed across the face of goal.

“I thought we had more qual­ity but lacked Shrews­bury’s tenac­ity and de­sire, “said Brad­ford City boss Stuart McCall.

“There were times we tried to play out from the back and Shrews­bury never al­lowed us the time or space to do that ef­fec­tively.

“Bot­tom line, we didn’t play well. But we will learn and im­prove.”

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