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10 August 2022

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Mark Hughes commended his side's "smart" performance after the Bantams progressed to the second round of the Carabao Cup with a 2-1 win over Championship side Hull City.

Hughes admitted, at times, City gave Hull “too much respect”, but was pleased overall with their composure as they won their first game of the 2022/23 campaign.

He said: “It was an excellent performance from the guys, once we understood what was required, which was obviously the tempo and intensity.

“I think, at times, we paid them too much respect, which was understandable, playing against a team a couple divisions higher than us.

“There was a clear shift in our attacking display at the end of the first half and we sensed that if we continued in the same vein in the second half, it would be a good result at the end of it.

“In the second half, I thought each and every one of them looked after each other. When one of the lads went out to engage with someone, there was someone always behind them, giving them encouragement.”

The Bantams boss was particularly pleased with the character of the squad, as Andy Cook bagged a brace on his first start of the season and Scott Banks, who recently signed on loan from Crystal Palace, impressed.

Hughes added: “Cooky has been excellent in pre-season, and deserved to start today, after his performance at the weekend as well. He was a nuisance all night, and put a lot of pressure on their backline.

“Scott Banks did very well. I was contemplating taking him off to save his energy, but after 70 minutes, he upped his intensity. For him, it was a great debut and one he will remember for a long time. 

“It was a platform for us to build on and we have to give our support that we have a lot more joy than they have had in previous seasons.”

Hughes' men return to action at the University of Bradford Stadium against Newport County on Saturday. CLICK HERE to purchase tickets. 

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