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Parkinson encouraged

28 July 2013

Although his side tasted defeat for the first time this pre-season, Bantams boss Phil Parkinson says that he still felt encouraged by City's showing against Doncaster Rovers this Saturday.

After a number of decent chances for both sides in an entertaining friendly at the Coral Windows Stadium, Parkinson's men were all set to draw their contest with the Championship side until a late deflected goal credited to Kyle Bennett ensured the visitors would leave with the victory.

One week before City begin their first campaign in League 1 since 2007, Parkinson's men were a match for their higher ranked opponents for the vast majority of the game, with Doncaster fielding a large number of the team that helped secure them the title last season in the Bantams' new division.

Given the fact that City were able to go toe-to-toe with a side who enjoyed great success in League 1 last campaign then, Parkinson felt there was every reason for the Bantams to be confident going into the beginning of the new season.

Parkinson said: "It was a good game for us because we were up against a side who got promoted from League 1 last season, and they have today (Saturday) pretty much played the side that got them up, barring one or two new players.

"That meant it was always going to be a good test for us.

"We've probably had the better chances in the game, but obviously we are still a little disappointed to lose. It doesn't matter how well you play, you still want to try and win every game you can.

"I thought we looked threatening going forward, however, and we played some good football. We seemed to have a cutting edge about us.

"We looked a little bit leggy at the start, but we expected that to be honest. Most of the lads had their first ninety minutes on Tuesday (vs Grimsby Town) and then they trained Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. It is hard for the lads, but we have to get them used to the rigours of League 1.

"As the game wore on though, we got better and better and, in general, I think we have to be pleased with the performance.

"They were so many good things we can take from the match."

City's friendly with Doncaster was scheduled to be the club's final pre-season game before the start of the league season at Bristol City, but Parkinson confirmed after the game that he will be taking a squad down to Blue Square Bet North side Harrogate Town this Tuesday (30 July 2013).

Pictures kindly provided by Gintare Karpaviciute

The likes of Kyel Reid, Michael Nelson and Alan Connell are all set to feature as Parkinson aims to give some of his squad members some more match practice ahead of his side's trip to Ashton Gate next weekend.

Parkinson added: "We have players like Mikey Nelson, Alan Connell and Kyel Reid, who have come back looking really fit in pre-season and I knew they would be disappointed not to play today - that is only natural.

"But they will play on Tuesday (vs Harrogate Town). It is a bit hard at this time of the year because you want to give some players back-to-back matches under their belts so that they can build up their match fitness levels.

"On the downside, however, that normally means other players, perhaps who have been unlucky not to start, missing out and not getting enough game time themselves.

"Tuesday will rectify that though.

"Harrogate is a good place to play, the pitch will be decent, and I can assure our supporters that will be bringing a reasonably strong team to this game."

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