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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

29 July 2017 Venue MBi Shay Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

FC Halifax Town
0 - 3
Bradford City
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Match Reports


29 July 2017

The Bantams warmed up for their season opener against Blackpool next weekend with a comfortable 3-0 success over West Yorkshire neighbours FC Halifax Town.

Substitutes Omari Patrick and Ellis Hudson (2) netted after the break in the behind-closed-doors fixture - City's last friendly of the summer before the start of their new Sky Bet League One campaign.

After an even first period at a near-empty MBi Shay Stadium, Stuart McCall's men opened the scoring early in the second period through half-time replacement Patrick.

Hudson - introduced into the action himself as a sub later in the half - then netted a late double to finish the scoring for McCall's side.

The three unanswered goals against the Shaymen capped off an improved second half showing for the Bantams after a low-key opening period.

Timothee Dieng was given the first 45 minutes on his return from a calf injury.

He played in central midfield alongside Jake Reeves, as City lined up in a traditional 4-4-2 formation at the start of the match.

City took their time to get going in the early stages of the game, with the hosts forcing a number of corners in the opening ten minutes.

From one such set-piece, Halifax defender Scott Garner headed narrowly wide of the far post from Connor Oliver's delivery.

The Bantams' first real opening of the match was a promising one after Nicky Law picked out the run of Alex Jones.

Jones got the better of Halifax skipper Matthew Brown to turn into shooting space inside the box but the striker's rising shot from a decent position flew over.

Halifax responded with two chances of their own in quick succession. Firstly, Adam Morgan volleyed over from outside the box after Tom Denton had headed Cliff Moyo's long ball forward down into his path.

Denton was then nearly involved again soon after as Romain Vincelot had to head behind by the far post to deny the giant striker a chance to pounce on Josh MacDonald's teasing cross.

Midway through the half, Morgan tried his luck with a twenty-five yarder but the effort was held comfortably by Colin Doyle.

Vincelot looked to test Sam Johnson in the Halifax goal soon after at the other end from a similiar distance but his first time drive thudded into the empty stand behind the 'keeper's net.

Halifax had a chance to take the lead just past the half hour mark but Doyle saved well from Denton after the striker had connected with MacDonald's well-placed cross.

Doyle had his hands on the ball again five minutes later but it was a more routine save for the 'keeper as he held Oliver's free-kick towards the near post.

With the Bantams looking to test the Halifax defence more as the half progressed, a number of promising through-balls narrowly missed picking out runs from City players.

One such occasion came just two minutes before the break when Tony McMahon looked to play Alex Gilliead through on goal but the well-timed pass into the box was cut out by an alert Josh Wilde.

Patrick and Matthew Kilgallon were brought on for the restart, leading to City beginning the second period with a diamond-shape in midfield.

The slight change in formation saw Kilgallon join Nathaniel Knight-Percival in central defence and Vincelot move up into a defensive midfield position.

Patrick was inserted into City's attack alongside Jones.

The two actually combined less than two minutes after the interval to hand the Bantams the lead.

As City broke forward with pace, Jones picked out the run of the unmarked Patrick in the middle and the young forward had the simple task of side-footing past Johnston from close range.

Halifax could have levelled shortly afterwards, however, when Dion Charles got the better of Knight-Percival in the box.

Charles seemed set for a shot at goal from close range but Kilgallon came across to make a superb block tackle and the ball rolled through to Doyle.

Despite that opening for Halifax though, City were soon back on the attack as they continued their bright start to the half.

McCartan, now playing in an attacking midfield role at the top of the diamond, drove forward with real intent towards the Halifax box.

The ball eventually broke to Jones inside the area but the striker's low drive rolled wide of the near post.

McCartan produced another busy run soon after but his cross into the box towards Vincelot was cut out.

City certainly seemed to be playing with more purpose in the second period, and Patrick could have added to his afternoon's tally with less than ten minutes of the half played.

Patrick played a one-two with Jones to put himself in with a sight of goal. The forward tried to flick the ball past Johnston but the shot-stopper was out quickly and produced a smart block.

After his chance earlier in the half, Charles looked to have another sight of goal just before the hour when he raced onto Denton's headed flick on.

Charles turned away from Kilgallon as he tried to engineer shooting space inside the box but Knight-Percival and Reeves combined to crowd him out.

Patrick - who has looked a bright prospect for City in pre-season - continued to pose a threat for the home defence with his hard-working style.

Wilde had to be on hand to block one shot from the youngster later in the half, although Patrick's next effort on goal flashed high up into the vacant stand behind the goal.

City made a number of changes in the final stages of the game, introducing the likes of Daniel Pybus, Daniel Devine and Hudson.

One of those substitutes - Hudson - would go on to make a significant impact on the game with a quick-fire double.

Less than two minutes on the pitch, Hudson increased City's lead when he neatly finished past Johnson with a fine right-footed strike from an angle after Law's through-ball.

After moving in-field from the right wing, Hudson then fired wide with a low drive from just outside the area that went narrowly past the post.

The sub wasn't finished there though. Less than sixty seconds later, the talented young winger latched onto Kilgallon's through pass to calmly slot the ball past the on-rushing Johnston with some confidence.

Halifax looked for a consolation goal late on but Ben Tomlinson's downward header from Scott McManus' cross was straight at Doyle.

Incredibly, Hudson could have been in for an unlikely hat-trick in the last minutes of the game but Johnston was just about able to block the ball after Patrick's headed flick on had played his team-mate in on goal.


1. Colin Doyle
2. Tony McMahon
3. Adam Chicksen
4. Jake Reeves
6. Nathaniel Knight-Percival
7. Nicky Law
8. Timothee Dieng
11. Shay McCartan
14. Romain Vincelot (c)
15. Alex Jones
17. Alex Gilliead


12. Rouven Sattelmaier (GK)
5. Matthew Kilgallon
10. Omari Patrick
16. Daniel Pybus
18. Jacob Hanson
19. Daniel Devine
20. Ellis Hudson

Patrick for Gilliead (46), Kilgallon for Dieng (46), Pybus for McCartan (76), Devine for Vincelot (78), Hudson for Jones (78), Hanson for Law (83)

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