In an entertaining fixture, James Hanson’s header mid-way through the first half was enough to cancel out Jimmy Ryan’s freak opener and secure a point - although it could well have been more for Phil Parkinson's Bantams.
Devante Cole had chances to win the game in the second half and City celebrations were cut short in the last seconds of injury time when Lee Evans’ free kick found the back of the net off Steven Davies. The flag was up on the far side for an offside decision to leave the hosts breathing a huge sigh of relief.
Town scored the opening goal within the first few minutes of the game. Ryan delivered a free kick into the area which got caught in the wind and looked to be heading over the head of Ben Williams.
The stopper clawed the effort away but the loose ball was smashed home from close range by Jamille Matt, although the linesman flagging on the far side suggested the ball had already crossed the line and the goal belonged to Ryan.
Victor Nirennold and Ryan had further half chances before Hanson found the equaliser for The Bantams. The goal came from a swift counter attack, Cole lead the attack and found Josh Morris to his left on the overlap and his delivery was turned in by Hanson from 8 yards out for his 3rd goal of the season.
Minutes before the break, Hanson could’ve fired City ahead. Tyler Forbes could only head Mark Marshall’s cross half clear and Hanson rifled a shot narrowly wide of the target on the turn from just outside the area, it would’ve been some strike.
Before the half time interval, there was still time for Morris to see a free kick held onto well by Chris Maxwell and Town’s Lyle Della-Verde to fire a volley a couple of yards wide of the target from 18 yards out.
Rory McArdle had City’s first chance of the second half, which he spurned, heading a yard or so wide at the far post after Marshall had delivered a dangerous cross into the area. Seconds later though, Devante Cole should’ve been celebrating his third goal in as many matches; Darby got down the line with intent and delivered a ball across the 6 yard box, but Cole glanced a header wide to let the hosts well and truly off the hook.
It just wasn’t to be Cole’s day on the goal scoring front, on this occasion he was denied by the upright after he turned to shoot towards goal after Knott had picked him out with a nicely weighted forward pass.
Jamille Matt provided City with a difficult, physical challenge and with time running out, he had two decent chances. His overhead kick from Bobby Grant’s corner was held alertly by Ben Williams, and a few minutes later he headed wide of the mark after Conor McLaughlin had picked him out with a cross from the right hand side.
Paul Anderson was introduced as a substitute late on and his first contribution was a positive one, a good run and cross was met by the head of Hanson who looped a header inches over Maxwell’s bar. Lee Evans and Davies were also brought on from the bench late on and the two combined to score what the close to 2,000 City fans thought was the winning goal with injury time almost up.
Evans delivered a free kick into the area, it was a dangerous low delivery and Davies glanced the ball past Maxwell and into the back of the net. Celebrations were cut short however when the linesman on the far side had his flag up for an offside decision, of course it needs to be looked at again, but it was an agonising finish to the game for The Bantams.