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Parkinson praise for Bantams battlers

2 November 2013

Bantams boss Phil Parkinson says he was pleased with the battling qualities shown by his side in their goalless draw at Crewe Alexandra.

With a blustery wind swirling around Crewe's Alexandra Stadium for the majority of the game, Parkinson's side had to cope with the tricky weather conditions as well as the efforts of the Railwaymen.

City had the better of the chances in an evenly-fought contest while the away clean sheet to go with the point is their third on the road this campaign.

The Bantams chief welcomed the Crewe shut-out and felt that only a bit more composure in the hosts' final third denied City the opportunity to snatch all three points from the League 1 encounter.

Parkinson said: "It was a tough game today (Saturday) - the conditions certainly didn't help. It did disrupt the flow of the game slightly but you have to be prepared for conditions like this in English football.

"You know that these are the sort of conditions you are going to face, especially at this time of year.

"You have to come off the pitch and say 'that was tough conditions today, but at least we've got something from the game', and we've been able to do that.

"I thought the effort and application of the lads was top draw.

"Coming off the back of the Wolves game - a match we should have got something from - you can sometimes get a performance were everyone is feeling sorry for themselves because we didn't (get anything from the game).

"In very difficult conditions though, we did roll our sleeves up and perform. The attitude was spot-on, we just lacked that little moment of quality in the final third to get us a goal.

"We've snatched at a few things today, but I think a lot of that was down to the conditions.

"We needed to get back into the mode of picking up clean sheets again. Despite playing well against Preston North End and Wolves recently, we did concede four goals in those two games.

"With that in mind, it was important for Jon (McLaughlin) and the back four to get a clean sheet.

"We really had to earn it (the clean sheet) because of the conditions. We needed to stand strong."

The best opening of the game fell into the path of James Hanson, who saw a second half header well saved by Crewe 'keeper Alan Martin.

Parkinson continued: "James has gone in with real intent and put in a brave header. He has put himself in and around the six yard box today where he can be at his most effective, but sometimes the 'keeper pulls off a save.

"Those areas are where we want our strikers though.

"My only criticism from our Wolves performance was that at times our anticipation in and around the box perhaps wasn't as it should have been.

"James has gone in with the right intentions and had chances in both halves today."

Hanson's strike partner for the afternoon was the returning Nahki Wells, who was making his first start for City since damaging ankle ligaments towards the end of September.

Parkinson said: "We're pleased to get Nahki back out there.

"He worked hard today. It was a tough game for him with his style of play, but he has stuck at it and he will improve because of today's game.

"After missing a few weeks with his injury, he played the second half against Wolves on adrenalin really. Today was harder for him, but he'll benefit from getting this game and from another week's training."

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