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The Voice - Match preview Salford City vs Bradford City Saturday 13th April 2024 3:00pm

Discussion in 'City Talk' started by The Voice, Apr 12, 2024.

  1. The Voice

    The Voice The voice of reason
    Staff Member The Voice

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    EFL LEAGUE TWO FIXTURE #43

    Saturday 13th April 2024 15:00
    Salford City (20th) vs Bradford City (13th)
    The Peninsula Stadium (AKA Moor Lane)

    22/23 & 23/24 Results:

    15 Oct 2022: Salford City 0 – 1 Bradford City
    22 Nov 2022: Salford City 1 – 0 Bradford City [EFL Trophy]
    01 Jan 2023: Bradford City 3 – 2 Salford City

    23 Jan 2024: Bradford City 1 – 1 Salford City

    Head-to-Head Form: DWLWW (most recent result first)

    Won: 3
    Drawn: 2
    Lost: 5

    Current League Form:

    Bradford City: WDWLL
    Salford City: LLLWW

    SALFORD CITY

    Back-to-back wins over Morecambe and Notts County in mid-March all but assured Salford City’s survival in League Two, and the 3 successive defeats that have come since could be seen as a sign that Salford City’s players have taken their foot off the accelerator a little bit. That didn’t appear to be the case after last Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at AFC Wimbledon, however, a result which followed a pair of 2-1 defeats to Sutton United and Walsall, which proved a feisty affair full of passion – too much passion according to the referee.

    Both Elliot Watt and Theo Vassell were sent off in the last minute for dissent, and manager Karl Robinson was charged for ‘acting in an improper manner’ near the match officials changing rooms after the game. That will mean key suspensions ahead of the Bradford City tie, with former Bantam Elliot Watt’s absence likely to be seen as a blessing by Bradford’s travelling fans.

    Robinson has called the performance of referee Ben Atkinson “the most shambolic refereeing I’ve seen in probably ten years”. The most major bone of contention began with a late free kick that Salford City tried to work into a training ground routine, only to be cleared by another former Bantam, Jake Reeves, who was clearly in breach of the 10 yard rule by at least a few yards. The protestations about that clearance were all too much for Ben Atkinson, who flashed a second yellow to send a bemused Reeves on his way, before sending Vassell after him as well via a straight red.

    Karl Robinson must now shuffle the deck ahead of a home tie with Bradford City, with at least 2 changes to a starting line up that has relied very heavily on both Watt and Vassell this season. Watt has made 33 starts from a possible 43, with Vassell having made 27 starts. The only players picked more often this campaign have been ever-present goalkeeper Alex Cairns (43 starts), defender Curtis Tilt (41) striker Matt Smith (37), and midfielder Ryan Watson (35). Declan John (29) and Conor McAleny (28) also feature amongst Salford’s most reliable starters.

    Speaking of big Matt Smith, the 34 year old 6’6 former Leeds United striker is enjoying his best ever season by quite some distance with a 23 goal haul so far. Callum Hendry, son of former Scottish international defender Colin Hendry, is the next highest scorer with 7, while McAleny (6) and Ryan Watson (6) are the only other players to have scored more than 3 league goals this campaign.

    Conor McAleny, once seen as a top lower league player, was at fault for missing a glaring opportunity at AFC Wimbledon and has generally struggled in terms of goalscoring form at Salford City since joining during the 2021 Summer transfer window.

    All in all, this may not be the worst time to play Salford City, especially if Matt Smith can be kept under wraps. Smith has only ever scored once against the Bantams, that being in the 2-1 victory over Leeds united in the FA Cup back in 2014, his late header being quickly cancelled out by a belter from Billy Knott, followed by an even leader effort from James Hanson.

    A great memory for Bradford City fans, no doubt, and the even better news is the hot shot striker is on a 6-game drought.



    AFC Wimbledon 1 – 0 Salford City

    BRADFORD CITY

    Bradford City managed to move up the table this week despite the cancellation of the Barrow away match (for a second time) after Morecambe were subjected to a 3-point deduction. While that doesn’t make a huge difference to the way the season has panned out, it does leave the top half of the table that little bit closer with 12th place Gillingham 3 points ahead but with a far worse goal difference.

    Graham Alexander would no doubt be delighted to guide Bradford City into the top half of the table, especially against his former employers, whose co-owner Gary Neville has made no secret of the fact he regrets Alexander’s sacking back in 2020. The last time Graham Alexander played a former employer, City ran out 4-0 winners at home to promotion-chasing MK Dons.

    While a repeat is hugely unlikely, this game appears to be coming at just the right time for Bradford City. Other than a potential backlash from a miscarriage of justice against AFC Wimbledon last weekend, Salford City find themselves on poor form while City have recaptured theirs. Home wins over Tranmere Rovers and Gillingham sandwich an away draw at Grimsby Town, with the Gillingham win in particular being a poignant one for their opponents. Gillingham still had an outside chance at the play offs, but that has been all but taken away now.

    Graham Alexander must instil his players with the desire to keep things going against 20th place Salford City and take advantage of their suspension-derived woes. That said, Bradford City barely rescued a point against lowly Grimsby Town in their last away game and haven’t always performed particularly well against sides in the bottom 5 this season.

    Forest Green Rovers beat Bradford City to kick off a mini slump that lasted throughout most of March, and Colchester United took a point at their own ground. Sutton United also recorded a victory on home soil in late October, with Grimsby also recording a point on their own soil most recently (see above).

    Still, City travel to a team with the third worst ‘Home’ league record this season, and they might even have the second worst if Colchester United are able to win their ‘game in hand’. That has to be a positive for Graham Alexander to focus on, with success-starved Salford City fans witnessing only 5 league victories all campaign.



    Bradford City 1 - 0 Gillingham

    THE BREAKDOWN

    6/4: Salford City
    5/2: Draw
    7/4: Bradford City

    Two massive underachievers according to the oddsmakers prior to a ball being kicked this season, Salford City vs Bradford City looks like the most uninspiring of ties on paper at this stage of the season. Neither team has anything to play for, and both teams have shown an absence of ‘pride’ at times, too.

    Still, Salford City find themselves in a far worse position. Hopeless at home (only 5 wins from 21 games), 20th in the table, and having to accommodate multiple suspensions following a fractious away day at AFC Wimbledon (a third defeat in a row, too, just to rub salt in the wound), the Ammies might be wishing for the end of the season now that they’re all but safe from relegation.

    January appointee Karl Robinson will get the Summer to try to rebuild a faltering squad, the former Leeds United assistant manager having replaced former Manchester United U23’s manager Neil Wood too late in the day to make a real impact. That will not, obviously, impact this Saturday’s game against a Bradford City side under pressure to end the season well if for no other reason to inspire more season ticket sales for a very loyal, but long-suffering fan base.

    Another five-figure crowd will be waiting in hope and expectation for a good season come August, which is quite remarkable all things told.

    All that said, the pick here is a Bradford City away win, and 2-1 will be the prediction. Despite their league position, Salford City have been reliable goalscorers this campaign, with 62 scored, but a leaky backline has been responsible for a full 78 conceded – the highest in the division. Bradford City, by contrast, haven’t been great goalscorers, but are averaging slightly over a goal-per-game (50), while conceding a few more (54).

    A goal-fest is not expected, though if City can take advantage of the fact Salford City are missing key players (including playmaker Elliot Watt), things could turn out even more positive for them. For the Ammies, meanwhile, it’s looking like a tall order.

    PREDICTION:

    Salford City 1 – 2 Bradford City
     
  2. bantam65

    P.L. 23/24 Top 10 P.L.23/24 Entrant Supporter

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  3. ahar964

    Supporter

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    Less than 4 hours to kick off. This must be the shortest match thread ever. I can't think of anything more interesting to say about it.
     
  4. king karl

    Staff Member Admin Moderator P.L.23/24 Entrant Supporter

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    Might as well be a friendly... Players going through the motions
     
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  5. SteveC

    P.L. 23/24 Top 20 Euro24 PL Entrant P.L.23/24 Entrant Qatar 2022 Entrant

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    Yep. Don’t think I’ll have any issues parking close to the ground this time around

    Good to see Watt and vassell are suspended. Smith always dangerous though
     
  6. MallorcaBantam

    MallorcaBantam Impact Sub

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    Hope GA doesn’t. Play any loanees unless we’re looking at keeping them
     
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  7. bailiff bridge bantam

    Euro 2020

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    This game is what mid table mediocrity looks like.
     
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  8. Steve1970

    P.L. 20/21 Top 20

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    Aslong as we are sustainable we don’t need any of those get you off your seat games and actually try get out of lge2
     
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  9. Birky Bantam

    P.L.23/24 Entrant

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    At least 1 of Oyegoke or Tomkinson has got to start whether we are looking to bring them back or not as they are the only fit options for RCB.

    I do think that Oyegoke will be released by Brentford in the summer and he's the right type of player for us to be looking at.

    With Alexander's comments in his pre-match interview I get the feeling we've been trying out Wright as LWB to see what he's like there and with Plymouth probably safe in the Championship we will have a good chance if we wanted to bring him back.
     
  10. shoatsy

    Euro24 PL Entrant P.L. 20/21 Top 30 P.L.23/24 Entrant Qatar 2022 Entrant Euro 2020

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    Really looking forward to this one.
    Come on city!
     
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  11. WilsdenBantam

    Euro24 PL Entrant P.L.23/24 Entrant Qatar 2022 Entrant Euro 2020

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    Going out to watch the grand national so won’t be paying this any attention. But hope some of the young lads get a good run out and do well, it’s literally the only point in the remaining games.
     
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  12. DimitriPayet

    Euro24 PL Entrant P.L.23/24 Entrant

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    To summarise how much of a joke we are right now, Smallwood is making his 100th appearance for the club
     
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  13. Birky Bantam

    P.L.23/24 Entrant

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    Same team as Gillingham. Wright starting at LWB ahead of Richards suggests we are looking at Wright as the LWB option for next season
    upload_2024-4-13_14-4-17.png
     
  14. Petrov

    Petrov Squad Player

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    Hopefully he will finish his Bradford career with 103 appearances.
     
  15. DimitriPayet

    Euro24 PL Entrant P.L.23/24 Entrant

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    FLW article next week “Bradford captain makes 100th app for the club despite unpopularity amongst the fanbase” ;-)
     
  16. Get Rid Of It

    P.L. 20/21 Top 20 Supporter

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    You want to watch the horses rather than our donkeys,
    Makes a ton of sense today
     
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  17. Onside

    Euro24 PL Entrant P.L.23/24 Entrant Supporter

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    Watching L**ds getting a beating. Always good entertainment
     
  18. Idlebantam

    P.L.23/24 Entrant P.L. 20/21 Top 10

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    I was critical of Oyegoke under Hughes before his injury, not that he played on a regular basis. However, since coming back I've been very impressed with him and he was my MOTM last week. Would be a good signing permanently, but he may wish to look at options down south if he's released?
     
    shoatsy, Kevin1954 and Stoneski like this.
  19. Botswana Bantam

    P.L.23/24 Entrant Supporter

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    Mark Bower does some good analysis.
     
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  20. bailiff bridge bantam

    Euro 2020

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