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Bradford City AFC Player Profiles

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UPDATED 03:03 16th July 2012

Goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin signed a one year contract with Bradford City on 3rd June 2008. McLaughlin signed for the Bantams from non-league side Harrogate Town. McLaughlin has also played for local rivals Harrogate Railway, including in a televised F.A Cup 2nd round match against a Mansfield Town side that included former teammates Michael and Rory Boulding. McLaughlin made his long awaited City debut during the club's final match of the 2009/10 season at Chestefield. The rookie keeper looked strong and composed on his way to a debut clean sheet in the Bantams victory at the Recreation Ground. At the end of the season, McLaughlin agreed a new one year deal with the club to sign on for a further term. On 30th June 2009, McLaughlin took part in Great Britain's opening fixture of the football tournament at the World Student Games in Belgrade, Serbia. The Bantams stopper took part in fourth further matches in the tournament, keeping 3 clean sheets in the process and helping Great Britain to a fourth place finish. McLaughlin started the 2009/10 season as Stuart McCall's second choice shot-stopper behind Simon Eastwood, who was on loan from neighbours Huddersfield Town. Eastwood started every game in the first half of the season, as McLaughlin was reduced to a watching brief. When Eastwood completed his loan period and returned to the Galpharm Stadium at the end of 2009, McLaughlin was finally given his chance. After one and a half years with the Bantams, McLaughlin made his long awaited home debut against Cheltenham Town on 2 January 2010. The Bantams drew the match 1-1, with McLaughlin only being beaten by a second half penalty from Robins striker Justin Richards. McLaughlin would have to wait until the start of April for his next first team action, but when it came he took it with both hands. A fine performance at Burton, capped off by a penalty save, sparked a run of six straight matches in goal for McLaughlin. He would go on to only concede three goals in that period. McLaughlin’s form earned him a new three year deal in the summer. The young ‘keeper would face a near season long battle with fellow shot-stopper Lenny Pidgeley – who joined part way through the season – during the 2010/2011 campaign. Despite this, McLaughlin managed to finish the campaign with 28 appearances under his belt. With Pidgeley leaving the club in June 2011, McLaughlin aimed to make the number 1 jersey his own, but his efforts weren’t helped by a serious food bug with left him hospitalised in pre-season. McLaughlin managed to return to full fitness by the early stages of the new season but new Bantams boss Phil Parkinson brought in fellow shot-stopper Matt Duke shortly afterwards to give the Scot competition for the ‘keeper’s spot. Duke and McLaughlin would go onto enjoy a healthy rivalry for the keeping position as the season wore on. Come the final months of the 2011/2012 season though, McLaughlin looked to have won the fight for the gloves as Duke was loaned out to fellow League 2 side Northampton Town for first-team football. Duke was recalled from his loan in March, however, after McLaughlin picked up a three-game ban for his part in an after-match altercation following a home fixture with Crawley Town. Despite Parkinson adding a number of fresh faces to his squad in the summer of 2012 in a bid to boost City’s promotion chances, Duke and McLaughlin remained locked together in their battle to establish themselves as City’s outright number 1. Following Duke’s dismissal in the second half of City’s Capital One Cup Final appearance against Swansea City, McLaughlin came on as a substitute to replace his fellow shot-stopper. McLaughlin was in goal from the start for City’s second match at Wembley of the season as the ‘keeper kept a clean-sheet against Northampton Town to help Parkinson’s men on their way to victory in the League 2 Play-Off Final.