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Salford City football Club

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Team Sheet

Salford City FC
Vaclav Hladky
Ibou Touray
Jason Lowe

Threlkeld 61'

Ash Eastham (c)
Tom Clarke
Ash Hunter
Yellow card for Ash Hunter

Turnbull 83'

Bruno Andrade

Thomas-Asante 68'

Di'Shon Bernard
Luke Burgess
2 goals for Luke Burgess 2 goals for Luke Burgess

Boyd 83'

Alex Denny
Yellow card for Alex Denny
Ian Henderson
1 goals for Ian Henderson
Bradford City
Richard O'Donnell (c)
Paudie O'Connor
Ben Richards-Everton
Yellow card for Ben Richards-Everton

Mottley-Henry 46'

Anthony O'Connor
Harry Pritchard

Scales 46'

Clayton Donaldson
Austin Samuels

Ismail 71'

Tyler French
Gareth Evans

Sutton 46'

Elliott Watt
Connor Wood
William Evans
Tom Elliott
George Boyd
Jordan Turnbull
Oscar Threlkeld
Mani Dieseruvwe
Brandon Thomas-Asante
Sam Hornby
Jackson Longridge
Zeli Ismail
Levi Sutton
Finn Cousin-Dawson
Kian Scales
Dylan Mottley-Henry
Manager - Richie Wellens
Manager - Stuart McCall
Match Officals
Referee - Carl Brook
Assistant Referee - Hristo Karaivanov
Assistant Referee - David Hunt
Fourth Official - Tom Nield

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Salford City produced a scintillating first half performance to sweep away Bradford City at the Peninsula Stadium. A brace from Luke Burgess (the second was special) and one from Ian Henderson put the Ammies firmly in charge at the break and there could have been more goals for Richie Wellens’ side. Bradford reorganised during the interval, but despite a decent second half showing never really threatened to make inroads into the home side’s lead.

Salford manager Wellens was unhappy after last weekend’s defeat at Bolton, and there were changes for this game. Skipper Ash Eastham returned to the centre of defence, partnering Di’Shon Bernard as Tom Clarke moved across to right-back. Luke Burgess and Alex Denny made their first EFL League starts in midfield and Bruno Andrade was drafted into the forward line in place of Brandon Thomas-Asante.

Bold selections from the new gaffer, yet the changes would pay off in some style. As early as the 2nd minute an Andrade run was ended by a robust Ben Richards-Everton challenge, with the Bradford defender picking up a yellow card. Ash Hunter had a go from the free-kick, almost 25-yards out, only to see his effort dip narrowly wide of Richard O’Donnell’s left-hand post. At the West Stand end Gareth Evans met a dropping ball with a volley that soared yards over Václav Hladký’s crossbar.

A half-chance for the Bantams, but Salford had started well and went ahead in the 8th minute. Another Andrade run was followed by a left-of-centre shot from distance that O’Donnell could only push away to his left. BURGESS was the first to react and recorded his first Salford goal as he steered a low, angled finish into the unguarded net.

A great start for the Ammies and they were soon looking to extend that early lead. On the quarter hour Burgess slipped a pass to Andrade on the right and he delivered a low square ball across the edge of the 6-yard box. Henderson has a finely honed poacher’s instinct and he turned before having a shot on goal charged down.

Good incisive football from the home side and they reaped their reward with a 2nd goal on 21 minutes. Hunter’s advance through the middle was finished off by a perfectly weighted lobbed pass to the right-hand edge of the penalty area. Clarke was there to direct a header that dropped to the edge of the 6-yard box and this time HENDERSON beat O’Donnell with a clinical low finish.

Bradford had enjoyed spells of possession so far, but apart from a couple of dangerous balls into the box had failed to worry home keeper Hladký.

The Bantams needed a goal and in the 25th minutes an Evans cross from the left was met by Anthony O’Connor on the edge of the area. A header on goal followed, but the ball was dropping wide until it was comfortably caught by Hladký.

Salford’s attacks generally carried much more menace and Andrade broke clear courtesy of a great Burgess pass before hitting a low shot towards goal. Another good build-up, but this time O’Donnell managed to extend a leg to deflect the ball to safety. For Bradford, Elliot Watt hit a 20-yard free-kick, only to see the ball drop just wide of Hladký’s left-hand upright.

Eight minutes before half-time Ibou Touray had a go from the left-hand angle of the penalty area, with O’Donnell doing well to push the rising drive around the near post. Hunter whipped in a corner from the left and it seemed as if Henderson had made it 3 with a great goal-bound header. O’Donnell pulled off a fantastic save, diving right to claw the ball away from virtually on the goal line, with Salford appeals that the ball had crossed the line falling on deaf ears.

An already entertaining half had burst into genuine end-to-end excitement and Bradford immediately looked to hit on the counter. A cross from the right found Clayton Donaldson whose downward header had Hladký scrambling to his right to push the ball away. Possession fell for Austin Samuels who looked all set to cut Salford’s lead in half as he hit a low, angled shot past the still grounded keeper only for the ball to come back off the base of the far post.

That would prove to be a costly miss, and Salford bounded away on the attack with Henderson finding himself clean through on goal. O’Donnell was advancing and the former Rochdale striker was left disappointed as a delicate chipped effort cleared the keeper before bouncing just wide of his left-hand post.

A breathless few minutes had somehow failed to provide a goal, but both teams would commit men forward until the end of the half. Two minutes before half-time a diagonal cross from the left found Clarke, again in space on the right-hand side of the box, but this time his header inside was behind the advancing line of red shirts.

It was Bradford’s turn next as Austin did well to control the ball and slip away from a challenge before racing through the inside-right channel. A shot from outside the box had power and probably direction until it slammed into a defender and away.

That wouldn’t be the end of the first-half incident as during the 1st minute of time added on Henderson intercepted a Bradford pass before nudging the ball back for Burgess on halfway. The young midfielder had impressed already but surpassed himself here as he set off on a right-flank run, tricking his way past Evans with some aplomb. A cut into the area followed and a neat jink beat Richards-Everton before BURGESS unleashed a rising, tightly angled shot with his weaker (apparently) right-foot that fizzed between O’Donnell and his left-hand post from about 4 yards range.

A top-class goal to cap a fine individual and team performance, and the Ammies were firmly on top as the teams headed into the half-time break.


The atmosphere in the respective dressing rooms can hardly have been more different, and with 5 substitutes now allowed in EFL games, Bradford manager Stuart McCall made 3 during the interval.

Kian Scales, Richards-Everton & Evans made way for Harry Pritchard, Dylan Mottley-Henry & Levi Sutton with, unsurprisingly no changes to Salford personnel.

The second half’s first incident of note was a booking for Hunter, followed by a Bradford corner that caused concern in the home defence before being cleared.

Hunter was involved again in the 51st minute, swapping passes with Andrade before drilling a low, angled shot from the right that passed wide of the far post.

Bradford had by no means given up hope of staging a comeback and were seeing much more of the ball. Doing something with it would remain a problem for them however, as Salford’s defence stood firm despite a number of decent balls played into their penalty area. In the 62nd minute Watt delivered a free-kick and Donaldson’s header had to be hacked away by a home defender.

The Ammies hadn’t clicked into the irresistible gear that had earned them that 3-goal advantage, but a couple of minutes later Denny won a midfield challenge before feeding a pass to Andrade. A galloping run forward was followed up by a ball to the left for Hunter, who made space for a powerful shot that O’Donnell pushed behind at the near post.

Denny did well again soon afterwards, picking up a clearance before heading for the line on the right and lofting a cross into the middle. Manchester United loanee rose to get in a downward header, but the visiting defence were able to clear their lines.

Thomas-Asante replaced Andrade for the final quarter of the game but the attacking intensity of the first half would not quite be recaptured. With 11 minutes to play an almighty scramble inside the Bradford box saw a couple of efforts blocked and one cleared almost from the line before the danger was finally averted.

The 82nd minute saw Salford City introduce George Boyd & Jordan Turnbull for Burgess & Hunter. The first time that the Ammies had used a 4th substitute in a league game you might reasonably think, but we managed to do it in March 2011 when Josh Tinker replaced Darren Hockenhull during injury time in a 3-1 Evostik League Division One North defeat at Chester. That one was a mistake!

With 6 minutes to play Watt charged through the middle before firing in a 30-yarder that Hladký managed to push over the bar. In the final minute of the 90 the same player tried his luck with a 25-yard free-kick that nicked off a defender and wide of the keeper’s right-hand post. The corner came to nought, time added on produced nothing of note and the Ammies claimed a deserved 3 points.


A victory earned in two distinct parts as the Ammies produced some great football and 3 goals during an impressive first half that had their opponents reeling. Crisp passing, great movement and flair allied to composure and concentration marked a dramatic turnaround from the performance at Bolton 9 days ago. That three goal lead didn’t flatter Salford who could have scored even more, and the performance of the two full debutants was particularly encouraging.

With 3 changes at half-time and doubtless a few choice words from the manager, Bradford were playing for pride during the second half. It was always going to be difficult to maintain the first-half levels of intensity, but Salford defended diligently and still managed to look the more dangerous side when getting men forward.

The bar has certainly been raised and with games coming thick and fast, there’s an early chance to maintain this form when Morecambe visit on Tuesday evening. For now though we can enjoy a great performance and a truly outstanding individual goal.