Bradford City 1 Notts County 1
City had to settle for a share of the spoils after going behind in the first half only to equalise through substitute Mark Yeates. Despite being on top in large parts of the match it was Gary Liddle who fired County into a first half lead prior to Mark Yeates 69th minute equaliser. The visitors had Marcus Haber sent off for a high challenge on Gary Jones and Liddle himself escaped with a yellow when it had looked like he may have been dismissed for a rash challenge of Matthew Bates.
There had been question marks over a few players’ availability for this game due to a bout of illness striking only a day or two earlier and Nahki Wells was one of them but he almost fired City ahead. James Hanson’s flick on dropped kindly to him and his low shot trickled narrowly wide of the far post.
County may have gone into the game sitting at the bottom of the League 1 table but they weren’t shy in testing their luck and Jamal Campbell-Ryce saw a low 20 yard drive go narrowly wide after City had failed to fully clear their lines.
On the 25th minute Wells put the ball into the back of the net after latching onto McArdle’s knock down following Matthew Bates’ free kick but the flag went up immediately on the far side for an offside decision against Wells.
Kyel Reid really should’ve given the Bantams the lead when Gary Jones’ set him up with a perfectly weighted pass but he could only hit his angled shot a yard or so wide of the target.
County striker Danny Haynes came close with a low shot that went narrowly wide after Andre Boucaud’s ball towards Marcus Haber came out to him just outside the area.
Despite being 2nd best for the majority of the 1st half it was the visitors who took the lead. Jack Grealish burst into the area and played the ball out wide to Haber who sent the ball across the area to the far post where Gary Liddle stole in to tap the ball home from close range.
Greg Tempest almost gifted City an equaliser when he diverted the ball towards his own goal only to see the ball go narrowly wide to spare his blushes.
James Hanson was somehow kept out brilliantly, twice in quick succession. His first header was kept out by Bartosz Bialkowski before he saw a second effort beat Bialkowski but Leacock was there to clear off the line.
City almost certainly should’ve equaliser through Garry Thompson when he raced clear following Tempest’s stray pass but he was denied in a one-on-one situation by Bialkowski.
Wells forced the best out of the County keeper after turning away from Smith before substitute Mark Yeates produced the equaliser; Wells played the ball back to the Irishman who beat his man with ease to get into the area before slamming the ball into the bottom corner.
County went close to going back ahead through Haber but his glancing header went narrowly wide of the target and then Jon McLaughlin had to stand firm to hold Manny Smith’s improvised shot. Marcus Haber was then handed a straight red card by referee Trevor Kettle for what seemed like a raised arm on Gary Jones.
City almost won in twice in injury time but Rory McArdle’s glancing header was held alertly by Bialkowski before Matthew Bates could only volley an effort straight at Bialkowski from 18 yards out after McLaughlin’s hopeful punt forward had dropped kindly to him. It wasn’t quite to be for a patched up City team but they go into Sunday’s clash with Oldham with 4 points from their last 2 games.