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WE ARE UP FOR THE CHALLENGE

15 September 2014

Bantams boss Phil Parkinson says City are up for the challenge of overcoming an in-form Milton Keynes Dons side and returning themselves back to winning ways.

Following back-to-back home defeats at the hands of Yeovil and Swindon respectively, Parkinson's men travel to stadiummk this Tuesday evening to take on third-placed MK Dons.

City's recent home losses may have dropped the club out of the top six but Parkinson says there is no-one shying away from the work needed to get the Bantams in the winners' circle once again.

Following their impressive 5-3 victory at Barnsley at the weekend, MK Dons will undoubtedly go into Tuesday's contest in buoyant mood but Parkinson has asked his Bantams to keep rolling up their sleeves and to keep believing.

Parkinson said: "MK Dons are a team who have obviously had a great result recently but this match is an opportunity for us to go down there and give a good account of ourselves.

"It is an obvious thing to say but from the first whistle to the last, one-to-eleven on Tuesday night will need to play well for us.

"No one is going to hand you the points, you have to go out there and earn them.

"We need to make sure we are stronger as a team and make sure that goals against us are harder to come by, certainly harder than they have been the last two games.

"As I say, no one is going to help us from outside the club. It is all about us as a group of players and staff members going down there and doing it for ourselves and for the fans.

"The game is a great challenge and we will be ready for it. I am looking for the players to show a real resiliency in the match.

"There were a few knocks after the game on Saturday and sometimes when you haven't won that treatment room can become a little bit fuller. That hasn't been the case now, however, all of the lads have a real determination about them.

"They want to get a result down at MK Dons."

Of the five goals conceded by City during the recent home losses to Yeovil and Swindon, four of them have come from set-piece situations.

Parkinson is fully aware of this fact and he has told his players that record must improve.

He added: "We need to give ourselves a chance.

"In the last two home games, we have conceded some really soft goals - and that is very uncharacteristic of us.

"If you look back over the last three years, our record at defending set-plays has been excellent.

"I just think at the moment that we are perhaps not doing that defending as individuals to the very best of our ability, and that needs to improve.

"As always, we will be thorough in our preparation for set-plays but mainly it is about the players properly marking the man they have been given to mark.

"If we come up against someone who is bigger and stronger and quicker than us and he scores a goal even though we are touch tight and marking him properly then sometimes you have to just accept that.

"I just think the goals we have given away, however, are ones where we have lapsed a little bit in terms of our concentration.

"We have to make sure that doesn't happen on Tuesday."



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