Bradford City 1 v 1 Gillingham (Sky Bet League One)
Bradford City welcomed acting CEO James Mason and striker Francois Zoko on loan from Championship side Blackpool this week, whilst Aaron McLeon and Lewis Clarkson both went out on loan to Peterborough United and non-league Whitby Town.
Former City manager Peter Taylor arrived at the Coral Windows Stadium with his Gillingham team hovering just above the relegation zone having won just one game of their last twelve.
In the second minute, Billy Clarke found space in the area before fizzing a ball across the six yard box which went out for a goal-kick, narrowly missing Jon Stead in the middle.
Cody McDonald thought he had give Gillingham the lead on three minutes, when he slotted the ball past Jordan Pickford only to see the assistant’s flag raised for offside.
On twelve minutes John Stead fired for goal from just outside the box but his low angled drive doesn’t have enough curl on it and the effort skips wide of Stuart Nelson’s far post.
Gillingham should have taken the lead on twenty-six minutes following Doug Loft free-kick which was headed out of the box by Andrew Davies, his clearance fell to Dack at the edge of the City area, but his twenty yard volley went narrowly over Pickford’s crossbar.
On the half hour mark, Mark Yeates’ corner flashes across goal, narrowly beating the runs of Stead, Davies and Clarke in the middle. The ball pops up for McArdle seconds later but the defender header lacks power and is collected by Nelson in the Gillingham goal.
Billy Knott is denied by a great save from Nelson, following brilliant hold-up play by John Stead, the striker tee’s up the on-rushing Knott just inside the area. However the midfielders powerful side-footed shot is turned onto the post by a great reaction save from the Gillingham keeper.
Right on half-time, City had the ball in the net when John Stead Slams home a Mark Yeates’ curling in-swinging cross but the striker’s celebration are cut short by an offside flag, to leave the half-time score 0-0.
On fifty-six minutes, City took the lead after Andrew Halliday took advantage of a Hause slip to run clear into the area, his curling shot to the far corner was turned into his own goal by Leon Legge to give City a1-0 lead.
Just after the hour, Billy Clarke’s neat little ball into the box finds the run of John Stead but the striker’s shot is well blocked by Hause.
Two minutes later, Mark Yeates goes for goal from just outside the box, but his curling strike is held low to his right by Nelson in the Gillingham goal.
Bradford should have extended their lead on seventy-seven minutes when Billy Clarke played James Hanson into space inside the area, but his chip over the advancing Nelson came back off the post.
On ninety minutes, Kedwell volleys narrowly over the crossbar from around fourteen yards following McGlashan’s cross into the City penalty area.
In the final minute of injury time, Brennan Dickenson’s far post corner is headed back across goal by Leon Legge for Antonio German to slot the ball into the corner of Jordan Pickford’s goal, to make the full time score 1-1.
Speaking after the match manager Phil Parkinson said, “We dominated the game but we needed to kill it off, we had chances but didn’t take them and we had opportunities in and around their box, but we needed to make better decisions.
When you don’t kill the game off, you’re always susceptible to that killer punch and that’s what happened. Unfortunately it’s the difference between a buoyant training ground on Monday and a flat one.
We are waiting on news of Filipe Morais who was taken to hospital for a check up on an injured shoulder, which forced him to come off on eighteen minutes.”
Bradford City – Pickford, Darby, Meredith, McArdle, Davies, Liddle, Morais, Halliday, Yeates, Stead, Clarke (Subs) Williams, Zoko, Sheehan, Kennedy, Hanson, Knott, Routis
Gillingham – Nelson, Egan, Hause, Legge, Loft, Hessenthaler, McDonald, Dack, Chicksen, Dickenson, Hoyte (Subs) Morris, Kedwell, McGlashan, German, Linganzi, Pritchard, Norris
Goals – (Bradford City) Legge (56 og) (Gillingham) German (90)
Attendance – 12,434