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McCALL HAILS 'CLINICAL' CITY AFTER ROCHDALE WIN

14 November 2016

Bantams boss Stuart McCall was pleased with the clinical nature of City's performance after they brushed aside Rochdale on Saturday with a dominant display at the Northern Commercials Stadium.

First half goals from Billy Clarke and Timothee Dieng were added to by efforts from James Hanson and Mark Marshall after the break to secure a 4-0 victory for McCall's men.

The win moves City back up into second place in the Sky Bet League One table. 

Ahead of City's opener from Clarke shortly before the break, Rochdale, who ended the game with ten men following defender Niall Canavan's dismissal in the second period, did have a couple of opportunities to trouble the scorers first.

McCall admitted that perhaps City were helped in part by a slight element of luck but the Bantams chief was still happy to see his side take their chances in key moments of the game.

Speaking candidly about the game, McCall said: "I think for the first half hour it was a fairly tight game.

"Rochdale are a good side and we were fortunate in a sense to come up against them when they had a few players missing.

"Putting that to one side though, our performance today (Saturday) in general was terrific.

"All four of the goals were brilliant. We've been on top in a lot of home games so far this season and not been clinical enough so it was nice to get a number of goals this time around.

"We could have had more by the end, we know that, but it was four quality goals from us at the right time.

"We know that Billy Clarke's best position is as a 'number ten' but we ask him to get in the box as much as he can when he's up there in attack, and he's got his rewards with the opening goal.

"Billy's then put a great ball into the box and Tim (Dieng) has got us another goal from midfield.

"Hans (James Hanson) has shown good awareness and persistence to get his goal for our third and Marshy (Mark Marshall) shows us his ability from the free-kick for the fourth.

"Left foot, right foot, we know Marshy can cause problems on both sides. He is normally one of the last to leave the training pitch, he is always working on his crossing, dribbling, free-kicks and shooting.

"I think we've shown in this game that we can mix it up. We can battle and scrap, we can play in different ways.

"We've got plenty of heart, desire and determination. But we've also got a lot of quality - Keith (Hill, Rochdale) was very complimentary of our players after the game."

With regular custodian Colin Doyle away on international duty with the Republic of Ireland, German shot-stopper Rouven Sattelmaier came into the side for his league debut with the Bantams.

McCall added: "We had no worries about putting Rouven in.

"He has worked really hard since coming into the club over the summer. 

"He didn't have a lot to do during the game but he was composed, he organised well and his distribution from the back was good.

"He will be pleased with his clean sheet, he deserved it."

Along with Doyle, Josh Cullen was also expected to miss the Rochdale game after being called up by the Republic of Ireland Under 21s but he was given permission to play following talks with the Irish set-up.

McCall continued: "In fairness to him, Josh came to see me during the week to say that he wanted to play in this game.

"Ireland have two friendly games in La Manga (Spain) and we wanted to see if he could miss the first one so that he could play against Rochdale.

"We checked it out West Ham first and they were happy with the idea. His manager at Ireland (Noel King) was very understanding as well, so we thank everyone involved for that.

"He flies out on Sunday and he will be available for their second friendly on the Tuesday.

"It obviously worked out well for us because, along with a lot of the lads, I thought he was outstanding."

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