10-man Salford City left Bradford City empty handed after the hosts came from behind in the second half to register a first win against The Ammies.
For 40 minutes it was Salford well on top, and Brandon Thomas-Asante’s clinical finish on 35 minutes reflected that in the score. It could have been more emphatic too with debutant Ryan Watson placing an effort over the bar from just inside the area.
However the afternoon became a backs-against-the-wall job when Thomas-Asante was shown a straight red card for a raised elbow against match winner Paudie O’Connor before the break.
After Ash Hunter flashed wide of the post on the counter in the second half Bradford equalised when Salford failed to clear their area, with a loose ball coming off the a none-the-wiser Watson. O’Connor then rose in the final five minutes to glance in a Callum Cooke cross after an otherwise formidable defensive display from the 10 men.
A harsh outcome ultimately, and Gary Bowyer admitted to sharing the players’ pain.
“I thought we were impressive the way we went about it, how we played, I thought we were on the front foot. Ryan Watson made a massive difference to us as well, really pleased with his debut.
“We had a couple of great opportunities ,it was great to have Ash Hunter back in the team as well. To take the lead I thought it was well deserved but the game changes on the red card.
“I’m not disappointed with the decision, I think it’s the right decision, I’m disappointed with the action that led to the red card.
“I feel sorry for the lads, for the rest of the game they put so much effort in, and on the back of Tuesday night’s tough game as well. But if you look at their goal, the manner of their equaliser, it comes off the back of one of the defender’s heels so they’ve had a bit against them.”
The Ammies have another quick turnaround now as they prepare to face Port Vale on Tuesday night at Vale Park.