Stuart McCall admitted a feeling of disappointment, after a promising performance from his young side could not save them from a 3-1 defeat against Oldham Athletic.
The Bantams controlled large periods of the second half when level, though conceded two late goals which saw them bow out of the Papa John’s Trophy.
Despite enjoying what he felt was an entertaining affair, McCall was disheartened by the end result, given his team's performance.
He said: “I thought it was a good, end-to-end game of football, which we are naturally disappointed to lose.
“In the second half, we had equalised and knew we had to win the game to go through, so probably went for it even more so.
“If we had have kept it to 1-1, I felt we would have had a really good chance of winning, but then we lost two goals on the counter attack, which was disappointing.
“We were up against a bit of experience, as Oldham had a lot of their first-team players in there.
“We created plenty of chances and, in the second half, at 1-1, there was only team which looked like it was going to win it. We just had to win it at that stage, which we did not.
“Their opportunities came from us giving the ball away. We just have to look after it a little better. It was a good effort, just not good enough.”
McCall was also pleased to have been able to hand two under-18s their debuts in claret and amber, as well as giving minutes to all first-year professionals.
No less than eight homegrown players represented City at the Utilita Energy Stadium, and the former Scotland international believes the competition has had its benefits in this breath.
He added: “We decided to bring the two young lads on, and it was a great experience for them.
“I remember giving Reece Staunton his debut in this competition when he was 15, so it is always a good chance for lads to pick up minutes.
“There were lots of good things in the game and many elements we can show the young boys.
“Tactical bits of the game can be picked up on - if they want to go as far as possible in their careers - but I thought they gave everything they had.”
McCall’s men return to Sky Bet League Two action with a 3.00pm visit of high-flying Exeter City on Saturday (November 14). CLICK HERE to purchase an iFollow video match pass and ensure you do not miss a minute of the encounter.