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Match Previews


5 February 2021

Match Previews


5 February 2021

The Bantams are back on the road in Sky Bet League Two - making the 564-mile round trip to St James Park to face Exeter City (1.00pm).

The Grecians sit eighth and are six points from the summit of the table, having won 10, drawn nine and lost six this season.

We have produced this Opposition Guide to take you through everything you need to know about Saturday’s hosts.


The Devonshire-based outfit brought in five new additions, with two players departing in the January transfer window.

INS: Lewis Wilson (Bideford AFC, recalled from loan), Cheick Diabate (Tiverton Town, recalled from loan), Jökull Andrésson (Reading, loan), Sam Stubbs (Fleetwood Town), Robbie Willmott (Newport County).

OUTS: Lewis Ward (Portsmouth, loan), Nicky Law (Indy Eleven).


Rory McArdle

McArdle represented the Bantams 231 times across a five-year stint at the club. During his time at the Utilita Energy Stadium, he helped City to the 2013 Carabao Cup Final as well as the Emirates FA Cup Quarter-Finals - in 2015.

The 33-year-old defender joined the Devonshire-based outfit in May last year, having previously enjoyed spells at Rochdale, Aberdeen and Scunthorpe United.

Ryan Bowman

The experienced striker has a keen eye for goal after bagging 15 goals and six match winners in 47 appearances for Exeter - on their way to the Sky Bet League Two Play-Off Final last season.

Bowman signed for the Grecians from Motherwell in January 2019, and has also represented the likes of York City, Torquay and Gateshead. 

Matt Jay

Jay is a product of the Exeter City academy and has turned out for the Grecians 106 times, scoring 26 and assisting 23 in all competitions. He is the club’s top scorer this season with 11 goals.

The 24-year-old striker has also enjoyed brief spells on loan with Weston-super-Mare, Hayes and Yeading United and Truro City, since making his professional debut in September 2013.


Jake Taylor has proved a fan favourite at Exeter since rejoining the club in 2016.

The experienced midfielder has just surpassed 270 appearances for the Devon-based outfit. Last season, he played 43 games, netting three times.

This is Taylor’s second stint at the Grecians after joining the club on loan from Reading in the 2011/12 season.

He has also made appearances for Aldershot, Cheltenham Town, Crawley Town, Leyton Orient and Motherwell.


Aged 39, Matt Taylor remains one of the youngest managers in Sky Bet League Two.

The former defender was appointed first-team manager in 2018 and has come close to promotion back to Sky Bet League One, a feat he achieved as a player with the Grecians in 2008. 

He guided the club to last season’s Sky Bet League Two Play-Off Final, losing 4-0 to Northampton Town.

Taylor worked as Exeter’s under-23s head coach for two seasons before taking over from Paul Tisdale - after an impressive Premier League Cup campaign.


Former Bantam Rory McArdle scored the only goal as the Grecians got back to winning ways against Stevenage - following two-straight defeats.

Stevenage 0

Exeter City 1 (McArdle 28’)

Sky Bet League Two

Tuesday February 2 

Exeter: Andrésson, Sweeney (Page 70'), McArdle (Parkes 86'), Hartridge, Caprice, Collins, Taylor, Sparkes, Jay, Bowman, Seymour (Willmott 70').

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