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Match Reports

Bradford City 1 Wycombe Wanderers 0

19 March 2013

Bradford City 1 Wycombe Wanderers 0

The Bantams were back to winning ways at home as they recorded a narrow victory over Gareth Ainsworth's Wycombe Wanderers. 

A first win at The Coral Windows Stadium in 6 league games was ensured as Garry Thompson struck the only goal inside the first 7 minutes of the game. The much needed three points moved City back to within 7 points of the play-off places with 8 games remaining.


City almost went ahead inside the opening minute as they did in the reverse fixture when Nathan Doyle struck; Kyel Reid's corner was headed downwards towards goal by James Hanson but QPR loanee Michael Harriman was alive on the front post to clear the ball to safety.


The combination of Reid and Hanson proved a major threat once again as The Bantams went ahead; Stephen Darby won a free kick after an excellent attacking run was unfairly brought to a halt and Reid's delivery was nodded down once again by Hanson; it was Garry Thompson who profited by hammering the ball home from close range to get City off to a dream start.


Wycombe responded quickly and came close to equalising only two minutes later. Dean Morgan proved a key attacking outlet for the visitors and he produced an excellent low cross which was met by leading scorer Matt McClure but Andrew Davies was on hand to make a potentially goal saving block.


James Meredith was making his first appearance since being hauled off ill at Morecambe on New Year's Day and he certainly wasn't looking off the pace. His precise through ball presented Reid with another crossing opportunity and his low cross was poked narrowly wide of the target by goalscorer Garry Thompson.


The visitors led a lightning counter attack and after Dean Morgan had evaded a challenge from Rory McArdle he had time and space to either drive into the area or pick out a cross, he opted for the latter with Sam Wood lurking in front of goal but Wood could only direct his header within the reach of Jon McLaughlin who held comfortably.


After City had done brilliantly to retain possession on the right hand side Ricky Ravenhill knocked a ball forward that was cushioned into the path of Zavon Hines by James Hanson, Hines' resulting shot fizzed narrowly wide of the target.


Wycombe tried to pile on the pressure early doors in the second half but after an attack broke down, City led a counter attack. Rory McArdle's clearance was collected by Garry Thomspon who beat an opposition defender brilliantly by knocking the ball over his head and his resulting shot wasn't too far from Jordan Archer's goal as it flew narrowly over the bar.


Dean Morgan was at the centre of a Wycombe attack once more and after his initial cross had been blocked his second attempt was far more successful as it dropped kindly to Matt McClure, but the Northern Ireland U21 international could only head over the bar after he had rose unchallenged inside the area.


James Hanson was presented with an unlikely shooting opportunity when a bouncing loose ball was left unattended by the Wycombe back line, the big frontman proceeded to lash a powerful half volley a yard wide of the target from the edge of the area.


City came close to doubling their advantage in what had proved to be a scrappy second half of football; Garry Thompson's cross was headed back across the area but the onrushing Rory McArdle couldn't get enough contact on the ball at full stretch to force a goal bound attempt.


Ricky Ravenhill limped off the pitch in agony after coming off worse in a fierce challenge with Chairboys' midfielder Josh Scowen. Ravenhill seemed in distress and furious with the challenge but as he got back to his feet it was clear he couldn't carry on and was helped off the field to be replaced by Nathan Doyle.


The game somewhat lacked the spark in the second half that had been on show in the first half as Wycombe looked to find an equaliser and City looked to dampen any attacks the visitors had and potentially sneak a killer second goal.


Wycombe almost got the equaliser they were in desperate search of when towering centre half Dave Winfield met Sam Wood's corner kick with a powerful headed effort that zipped on narrowly over Jon McLaughlin's bar.


Kyel Reid showed many positive signs of attacking intent during Saturday's defeat at Exeter and he was often doing the same tonight; he burst down the left wing and got the better of Stuart Lewis to produce a superb low cross that narrowly evaded the slide of James Hanson at the far post.


The Bantams battled through the 6 additional minutes at the end of the 90 to secure a much needed victory and three points to complete the league double over Wycombe Wanderers. With a home win finally under the belt after 6 weeks of trying, and a home double header on the horizon a late play-off challenge may not be over just yet!

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