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Persistence paid off

8 December 2012

Bantams boss Phil Parkinson was thrilled to see the persistence and patience of his side finally pay off after City picked up a hard-fought victory over Torquay United this Saturday thanks to Alan Connell's late winner.

Connell's stunning drive five minutes before the end of normal time came after City had laid siege to Torquay's goal following Gulls skipper Brian Saah's dismissal towards the end of the first half for an elbow on James Meredith.

The goal was greeted with a mixture of joy and relief around a vibrant Coral Windows Stadium after it had started to look like it might not be the Bantams' day.

Despite a number of chances coming and going before Connell's winner, Parkinson praised his side for sticking to their guns until they eventually got their rewards.

"The patience and professionalism of the lads was superb - it was really excellent," said Parkinson.

"We played how you should against ten men who are sitting deep. You have to keep passing the ball, keep your cool and make your extra man count.

"We were slowly getting that feeling that it might not be our day and then Alan's (Connell) produced a moment of class.

"I thought the crowd were really good with us today as well. They didn't lose patience with us as the game wore on.

"That was very important in a game of this nature because they knew exactly what was going on and what we still had to do.

"We knew we had to keeping passing the ball, get our wide players into the game and keep plugging away.

"We've had some great chances before Alan's goal but sometimes it isn't easy in football. Sometimes you have to keep working away to get your rewards."

With City's mouth-watering match with Arsenal coming up next Tuesday, Torquay manager Martin Ling had hinted pre-match that Parkinson's men may have one eye already on the Capital One Cup Quarter-Final tie.

After a performance from his players full of the usual gusto and commitment though, Parkinson was pleased to see that City's forthcoming date with the Premiership giants didn't hamper their efforts against the Gulls.

Parkinson said: "A lot of people around the country will have been looking out for our result today to see how we did knowing that we had the Arsenal match coming up next."

"I have to say though, the way the lads applied themselves was first class. I never had any doubt that they would.

"Martin Ling comments leading up to the game, quite righly so, suggested that his side would have to capitalise on the fact that we have this big game coming up. 

"I think he thought we might not be running as hard or tackling as hard.

"I'm delighted to say that there was no evidence of that today. 

"Myself and Steve (Parkin) had a chat before the game about what we were going to mention in the pre-match team-talk but we knew that we wouldn't have to mention to them about forgetting the Arsenal game. 

"They knew already - there is some real experience in our dressing room.

"I'm very proud of the players."

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