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Match Previews


31 December 2021

Match Previews


31 December 2021

The Bantams will be looking to kickstart 2022 with a victory on their visit to Holker Street, where they will face Barrow in a Sky Bet League Two clash on New Year's Day.

The Bluebirds enter the New Year in 19th, two places above their final position last season. 

Barrow ended 2021 with a home draw against Oldham Athletic on Wednesday, with the two sides playing out a 0-0 stalemate.

City hosted the return fixture in September last year. Charles Vernam’s 59th-minute equaliser secured a point for the Bantams after the visitors netted inside the first 20 minutes.

We have put together an Opposition Guide to give you all of the key details you need to know about our upcoming opponents. 


The Bluebirds brought 10 fresh faces into Holker street over the summer, allowing 14 players to depart - including last season’s top goal-scorer Scott Quigley. 

INCOMINGS: Paul Farman (Carlisle United), Remaeo Hutton (Birmingham City under-23s), Joe Grayson (Blackburn Rovers under-23s), Festus Arthur (Hull City, loan), Mark Ellis (Tranmere Rovers), Robbie Gotts (Leeds United), Tom White (Blackburn Rovers under-23s), Jordan Stevens (Leeds United), George Williams (Grimsby Town), Josh Gordon (Walsall), Offrande Zanzala (Carlisle United). 

OUTGOINGS: Joel Dixon (Bolton Wanderers), Brad Barry (Stevenage), Dion Donohue (Caernarfon Town), Bobby Burns (Glentoran), Scott Wilson (Curzon Ashton), Sam Hird (Retired), Yoan Zouma (Released), Chris Taylor (Released), Callum Gribbin (Released), Courtney Baker-Richardson (Newport County), Calvin Andrew (Released), Morgan Penfold (Released), Mikael Ndjoli (Released), Scott Quigley (Stockport County). 


Ollie Banks 

The 28-year-old midfielder joined the club in January last year after leaving Tranmere Rovers on a free transfer.

Banks has netted seven goals in 20 games this season - making him the club’s top goal-scorer.

Rotherham-born Banks started his career with the Millers before spending time in both the Vanarama National League and Sky Bet League Two: playing for the likes of Northampton Town, Chesterfield and Oldham.

Josh Kay

Goal-scorer in the return fixture, Kay joined the club in 2018 and is on course to make his 100th appearance for the Bluebirds this season.

The 24-year-old has netted twice from midfield this campaign and made himself a regular under Mark Cooper, who reversed the club’s decision to release him when he took charge.

Kay was a member of the Bluebirds' National League-winning side during the 2019/20 season. Ian Evatt led Barrow to the top of the league before COVID-19 curtailed the season and they were promoted on a points-per-game average.

Joe Grayson

Son of former City manager Simon, Grayson has impressed since his move to Holker Street in the summer.

The versatile youngster has made 20 starts for the Bluebirds in a range of positions - slotting in at centre-back, centre-midfield or along the left flank.

The 22-year-old began his career with Blackburn Rovers and spent time on loan with Grimsby Town, before ending last season in Sky Bet League One with Oxford United.


Despite only joining the club in the summer, Mark Ellis was awarded the captain's armband at the start of the season after previous experience with Mark Cooper at Forest Green Rovers. 

The 32-year-old is an experienced defender who has made over 400 career appearances. 

Ellis has donned the colours of a number of Sky Bet League Two clubs - representing Leyton Orient, Tranmere Rovers and table-toppers Forest Green.


Wakefield-born head coach Mark Cooper comes with plenty of experience, having managed nearly 800 games throughout his coaching career.

Cooper enjoyed spells in the EFL with Peterborough United, Swindon Town and Forest Green Rovers, before his move to the Bluebirds in the summer.

The former midfielder is the fourth man to have occupied the dugout at Holker Street since Evatt departed the club for Bolton Wanderers, taking over from caretaker manager Rob Kelly.


The Bluebirds ended a consistent year with a stalemate against Oldham Athletic.

Neither side managed to find an opening despite a number of chances for the home side, including an early penalty shout waved away by the referee.

Barrow 0

Oldham 0

Barrow: Paul Farman; Festus Arthur, Joe Grayson (Josh Kay 45’), Matthew Platt, Patrick Brough; Tom White, Michael Jones (Offrande Zanzala 45’), Connor Brown © (booked 54’), Josh Gordon; Jordan Stevens, Robbie Gotts (Tom Beadling 72’). SUBS (not used): Josh Lillis, Remeao Hutton, Mark Ellis. 


Meetings: 50

City Wins: 22

Draws: 14

Barrow Wins: 14

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