Mark Hughes was disappointed by the lack of creativity his side possessed, after City fell to a narrow 1-0 defeat at Carlisle United.
Paul Huntington’s headed goal was enough to secure three points for the Cumbrians at Brunton Park on Boxing Day, and the Welshman insisted his side have to find more purpose when in possession of the ball.
Hughes was pleased with the second-half improvement, as his side created chances to level the game, but the Bantams chief admitted there was “no craft or guile” in City’s play on their return to Sky Bet League Two action.
He said: “We did not create enough chances. We never really had that momentum to put them under sustained pressure.
“We struggled to deliver from wide areas and we could not capitalise through the middle of the park either. We had decent possession but had no purpose.
“They sat back with five defenders and we did not understand what was required to play through them.
“We had two great chances to get back on level terms, and who knows what might have happened if we did score them opportunities?
“Overall, there was not enough craft or guile in our play today.
“It has been a while since we last played and that showed in the opening periods, but in the second half we had a go, but still had not created enough chances and failed to maintain enough pressure.
“We had sporadic amounts of pressure and came into the ascendancy in terms of possession and chances on goal, but those moments petered out.”
Hughes addressed how the lack of game time and illness, which has hit the squad in the past week, had impacted the Bantams’ overall performance, but admitted “that is no excuse”.
After 23 days without a game, the Bantams now face two outings in the next five days, and Hughes urges for a quick turnaround in performance, and to get back to winning ways, as the Bantams now prepare to host Harrogate Town on Thursday evening.
“Our lack of game time might have made an impact, and we have had illness throughout the squad as well,” Hughes added.
“You look at that and say that might have reflected our performance, and that could be why we could not get in the right areas and were not sharp in possession.
“That is no excuse, though, and we have to be better than that.
“We have lost this game now, and there is nothing we can do about it. We have to get back on track.
“The issue now is that we have to get back to winning ways and we have not been able to do that for a couple weeks.
“We have got to address that in midweek. We talk about how we can damage opponents, but it is time we deliver on that again.”