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REF WATCH/FLEETWOOD TOWN KEY MEN

27 September 2016

Ahead of this Tuesday evening's Sky Bet League One encounter between City and Fleetwood Town, bradfordcityfc.co.uk takes a quick look at tonight's opponents and the main match official.


Graham Salisbury will take charge of tonight's fixture against Fleetwood at the Northern Commercials Stadium at Valley Parade.


His assistants this evening will be Barry Gordon and Alan Clayton, with Mark Dwyer the fourth official.


Salisbury has taken charge of eight games so far this season and has dished out 24 yellow cards and 1 red, to former City loanee Jamie Devitt, during Portsmouth’s opening day draw against Carlisle United at Fratton Park. That’s an exact average of 3 yellow cards per game during this season so far.


The last match he officiated was Yeovil Town’s 4-2 victory against Cheltenham Town in Sky Bet League One last weekend at Huish Park. In League One this season, he has overseen Southend United’s 3-1 win against Millwall, Sheffield United’s 3-2 win at AFC Wimbledon and Chesterfield’s 2-0 home victory against Walsall.


The last City game he took charge of was back in April 2015 when the Bantams recorded a 3-0 victory against Doncaster Rovers at the Keepmoat Stadium. Gary MacKenzie, Billy Clarke and Tony McMahon were all on the score-sheet that evening in South Yorkshire. 


Fleetwood Town - Four Possible Key Men

Jimmy Ryan

Age: 28 | Position: Midfielder | Previous Club: Chesterfield

 

The Liverpool born midfielder spent time in the youth ranks at Liverpool and was part of the club’s successful FA Youth Cup winning academy teams of 2006 and 2007. At the beginning of the 2007/08 season, he joined Shrewsbury Town on loan in a deal which was made permanent shortly afterwards.


A technically sound central midfield player, Ryan’s spell in Shropshire was brief and he moved closer to his North Western roots when he agreed a move to Accrington Stanley in August 2008. He established himself with Stanley and he went on to make 149 appearances (24 goals) during a three year stay before signing for Scunthorpe United in June 2011.

 

Not always a regular in the team during his first season at Glanford Park (2011/12), he made 27 appearances (2 goals) before making 49 appearances (2 goals) the following season (2012/13). In June 2013, he swapped Lincolnshire for Derbyshire when he signed for Chesterfield and he was a mainstay in the side that reached the League One play-off semi-finals in 2014/15 alongside the likes of Tendayi Darikwa, Sam Clucas and Sam Morsy.


After making 100 appearances (8 goals) for the Spireites during two years, he signed for Fleetwood Town in June 2015 and enjoyed an impressive debut season on the Fylde Coast. He made 49 appearances in all competitions and 3 goals which included a free kick against Bradford City in September 2015.

 

Bobby Grant

Age: 26 | Position: Midfielder | Previous Club: Blackpool

 

After coming through the youth system at Accrington Stanley, Grant (pictured above) made his professional debut in a 3-1 defeat to Milton Keynes Dons at the National Hockey Stadium in May 2007. He had to bide his time for a full breakthrough as a regular in the first team and only made 7 appearances the following season (2007/08).

In 2009/10, Grant found real form for Stanley and scored 18 goals in 53 appearances; that attracted interest from further up the ladder and he signed for Accrington Stanley in June 2010 for a fee of £260,000. During three years at Glanford Park, he made 70 appearances and following loan spells with Rochdale and former club Accrington Stanley, he signed for the former on a permanent basis in August 2012.

 

He impressed during a solitary season at Spotland which saw him score 18 times in 43 appearances during a season which saw him sent off twice; one for a poor challenge on Rory McArdle against Bradford City in October 2012. Grant signed for Blackpool in July 2013 with the Championship side seeking a return to the Premier League, but he only made 8 appearances for the club and after loan spells with Fleetwood Town and Shrewsbury Town, he signed for the Cod Army on a permanent basis in July 2015.

 

The Liverpudlian midfielder scored 11 goals for the club last season in 44 appearances, including a brace in a 4-0 victory against eventually promoted Burton Albion in October 2015. At the time of writing, he’s featured in every Town fixture so far this season and scored in the recent defeat against one of his former clubs, Rochdale.

 

David Ball

Age: 26 | Position: Forward | Previous Club: Peterborough United

 

Ball has started the season in superb form and at the time of writing he has 4 goals in 9 appearances for the Cod Army, playing a real part in the club’s promising start to the season under new manager Uwe Rösler.


In 2015, he was nominated for the FIFA Puskas Award which is a global recognition of an outstanding goal scored against Preston North End towards the back end of the 2014/15 season. In the company of the likes of Carlos Tevez and Lionel Messi, the award was eventually won by Wendell Lira of Brazilian side Goianesia.

 

A graduate of Manchester City’s academy, he made his professional debut whilst on loan at Swindon Town, starting in a 2-1 home defeat to Brighton & Hove Albion in August 2010. He went on to make 21 appearances (3 goals) for the Robins during the first half of the 2010/11 season before signing for Peterborough United on a permanent basis in January 2011. He made 45 appearances (11 goals) for the Posh before a move to Fleetwood Town in July 2012.


To date, Ball has made 163 appearances (39 goals) for the club. He scored 5 goals in all competitions last season and he has almost already equalled that tally. The 26 year old will be looking to reach double figures for the first time since Town’s promotion season in 2013/14.

 

Chris Long

Age: 21 | Position: Forward | Previous Club: Burnley

 

Currently on loan from Fleetwood’s Lancashire neighbours Burnley, Long has started the season well for the Cod Army and to date he has 3 goals in just 6 appearances; finding the net against Southend United, Coventry City and Charlton Athletic.


A graduate of Everton’s academy setup, the Liverpudlian frontman made just one appearance for the club during his time there, coming on as an 80th minute substitute for Conor McAleny in a 1-0 home defeat to FC Krasnodar in the Europa League. He made his professional debut, scoring whilst on loan at MK Dons in a 3-2 victory against Shrewsbury Town in January 2014.

 

He made 3 more appearance for the Dons; his next loan spell at Brentford during the 2014/15 season would probably be deemed as more of a successful one. He scored 4 times in 10 appearances for the Bees, helping the club to a place in the end of season Championship play-offs, the club eventually losing out to Middlesbrough in the semi-finals.

 

 

After signing for Burnley in July 2015, Long made 11 appearances during the course of the season in what was ultimately to be a successful campaign for the Clarets. He was loaned to Fleetwood Town last month and 5 days later he made his debut in a 2-0 home victory against Oxford United; the former Everton man will be hoping to maintain what’s been a promising start to life at Highbury.



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