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BOWYER RELISHING 'MEMORABLE OCCASION'

13 July 2019

City manager Gary Bowyer is relishing the prospect of his new-look Bantams appearing in front of a sell-out crowd - when six-time Champions League winners Liverpool FC visit the Utilita Energy Stadium.

The Bantams have enjoyed pre-season successes over Guiseley and Brighouse Town in recent weeks.

And Bowyer says he and his players cannot wait to face the European champions, sampling “a day to remember” in support of the Darby Rimmer MND Foundation.

He said: “We are really looking forward to Sunday. It is for an unbelievable cause and we are delighted to be hosting Liverpool. The players are understandably excited about the occasion - in front of a 24,000-plus crowd.

“It will be a wonderful game for the footballers but the main aim is to support Stephen Darby and Chris Rimmer, raising as much money as we can and highlighting the awareness of motor neurone disease.

“The fact this fixture sold out in a matter of weeks tells you a great deal. It is an appreciation and a measure of the impact Stephen had on the Bradford City fanbase.

“He displayed the qualities in a Bradford shirt that we are looking to bring in now. I feel we have done. The fact the supporters are turning out in their droves doesn’t surprise me at all.”

Bowyer, meanwhile, is pleased with the recruitment work done to date - with 10 new signings arriving over the last six weeks.

The Bantams boss is closely monitoring his new-look squad, as the start of the new season nears, in a bid to field the strongest-possible starting 11 come August 3.

Bowyer added: “I think we are progressing very well. The players have been working very hard and they are gelling. The spirit amongst them is fantastic.

“The quality of the work has been good but you do pick up bumps, bruises and pre-season soreness. We have had to be sensible with a couple of players, on that note.

“The characters we have brought in have made a big impact in the group. The ones who were here last season have had the cloud lifted off them, with the arrivals of the new signings.

“We wanted to bring in winners, leaders and characters - and I feel we have definitely done that over the course of the summer.

“The market has been pretty slow and we would probably need some outs as we move forward. We have identified a couple of targets but we are being quite selective at this stage.

“Credit must go to Stefan (Rupp) and Julian (Rhodes) for ensuring we had players through the door, early, in time for the start of pre-season training. It has given us a clean slate to work from.”


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