After three years of playing the game on a Saturday afternoon, the special fixture between 'City' and 'The Bantams' was played under the lights at Valley Parade for the very first time this Monday evening.
On a chilly evening, the fixture itself between the two teams of 'City' and 'The Bantams' ended 2-1 in favour of the 'away' Bantams team after ninety minutes of entertainment for both sides.
Goals in the first period from Joel Hardy and Andrew Midgely gave 'The Bantams' an advantage in the game which they held onto despite Luke Gill pulling one back for 'City' later in the half.
With the quality and commitment as high as it has ever been in the event's history, this season's fundraiser was another great success for the club and fans alike as twenty-seven supporters got the chance to fulfil their ambition of playing at the home of Bradford City.
The two sides were managed on the night by City boss Phil Parkinson and assistant Steve Parkin, with the pair ably assisted by none other than Tom & Dom from Bantams Banter!
As well as the appearance of City's management duo, former Bantams Jason Price, Joe Brown and Mark Bower were also involved in the evening.
Bradford Disability Football Club member Stephen Haigh, a deaf and mute City supporter, featured in the event as well thanks to the FFD Fans Fund.
The FFD (Fans For Diversity) campaign was jointly launched by Kick It Out and the Football Supporters’ Federation (FSF) in March 2014. The campaign runs regular events aimed at encouraging and helping with the facilitation of fan-related activity that celebrates equality and diversity in football.
Jaimie Dorward, Bradford City Disability Liaison Officer and trustee of Bradford Disability Football Club, applied for Stephen’s funding.
She said: “We thought it would a great idea to see one of Bradford Disability Football Club’s best footballers get involved and for the other participants on the day to understand the barriers that you’ve got to overcome.
“It’s important to promote a really positive image of disability,” she said. “I think out of all our players Stephen Haigh is known for being positive, for always smiling and always being happy.
“He’s an inspirational role model for the disabled community as someone who gets stuck in, gets involved and overcomes his barriers.”
The game, as you might expect, featured numerous goal-scoring chances and substitutes in it as every participant tried to get the most out of the unique event.
The game was organised to raise funds for the club's youth department, with supporters paying for the privilege to play in the game and spectators asked, if possible, to make a donation into one of the collection buckets around the ground.
As well as getting to play on the hallowed turf at Valley Parade, supporters who paid to take part in the 'Play It Like A Pro' fixture were given the full works on their special day.
Before the game, they were treated to a pre-match meal and an opportunity to go through a full warm-up on the pitch. The participants of the game also got the chance to play in the match in their own specialised shirt with their names printed on the back and used the official changing rooms at the ground.
The scoreboard and sound-systems were also in use at Valley Parade to give the game that all the more realistic feel to it for the players involved.
To add further credibility to the game, Football League referee Bobby Madley officiated the match.
Assistant Manager: Dom from 'Tom & Dom - Bantams Banter'
9. Joe Begaj