ROMAIN RUINS PILGRIMS’ RUN
STUART McCall is relishing the prospect of a new experience after Bradford reached the third round of the FA Cup for the first time under his stewardship.
Goals from Romain Vincelot, Nathaniel Knight-Percival and Charlie Wyke saw them overcome League One rivals Plymouth, despite a Graham Carey goal briefly bringing the visitors back into the game.
McCall never reached round three during his first three-year spell in charge, nor since taking the reins once more in the summer of 2016 – until now.
“I thought Plymouth played well but I was happy with our performance too,” said McCall.
“It’s great to be in the third round because it’s not happened whilst I’ve been in charge.
“Plymouth don’t lose many goals away from home, the key for us was getting that first goal and we didn’t let any edginess kick in when they got back into the game.
“They had opportunities to score but so did we, I thought it was a really good cup tie.”
The Bantams started the game on the front foot, Wyke having a goal disallowed after Luke McCormick spilled a cross into the box, before the goalkeeper produced a stunning double save to deny both Alex Gilliead’s deflected effort and Wyke’s rebound.
The saves seemed to turn the game in Plymouth’s favour, Jake Jervis firing an effort over before missing a huge chance.
A miscued back header from Tony McMahon left Jervis oneon-one, the striker looping his header over Rouven Sattelmaier but wide of the goal.
It proved costly when Vincelot rose highest just five minutes later to head home an inch-perfect McMahon cross from the right-hand side.
Jervis had another big chance right on half-time but failed to connect with Joel Grant’s cross from the left when stood just two yards from goal.
It once again proved costly as Bradford doubled their lead five minutes after the break, Knight-Percival appearing to divert a Vincelot volley from a corner over the line.
Plymouth did give themselves hope when Carey’s left-footed effort deflected off McMahon and over Sattelmaier, but that hope lasted less than 60 seconds.
Gilliead’s low cross from the right squirmed under McCormick, giving Wyke the easiest goal of his career, the striker slamming the ball home from all of a yard.
Despite the result, Derek Adams was pleased with Plymouth’s efforts.
“It was a really good performance from us – probably better than when we won here 10,” he said.
“Bradford scored against the run of play after we’d had a few good opportunities early on.
“Jake had two or three very good chances, he could have had a hat-trick before half-time. Bradford got a lift going 3-1 up but overall it was probably one of our best performances.”
STAR MAN ROMAIN VINCELOT Bradford IN-VINCEBLE: Romain Vincelot celebrates scoring the opening goal