Back in September the Bradford City vs Leeds United match was abandoned due to a nasty clash of heads which lead to players needing medical treatment. Unfortunately, the rescheduled match had been hard to fit in due to bad weather constantly pushing back the fixture however, last night it was finally played. The weather was awful, it was cold and raining very heavily and I was actually surprised the game latest the full 90 minutes, you could see the water settling on the surface, the mud seemed to be slowing down the run of play and causing quite a few questionable challenges, the rain just didn’t stop. The game did go the full 90 though and unfortunately for City, Leeds came out 3-0 winners.
Bradford started off well with a chance coming in the first few minutes and for the full 90 they were working the ball around the field really well, in fact, I would say they had worked it around better than I had seen in previous games. The first 15 minutes seemed to be all City but it was Leeds with the opening goal, a snapshot finding its way past Routledge who managed to get her fingertips to the ball but the ball inevitably found the back of the net, the Leeds goal definitely seemed to go totally against the run of play.
Not long after the goal there was a small delay in the game as the linesmen switched which half they were manning as the side near the Leeds dugout just seemed to be boggy, I don’t blame the linesman for not wanting to run back and forth in that for 90 minutes. In the first half Routledge seemed to take a few challenges but it didn’t seem to stop her making some great saves. Leeds seemed to wake up after the first goal but luckily for City so did City’s defence and they went into half time just 1-0 down.
City seemed to start the second half quite well but unfortunately less than 5 minutes after the restart Leeds doubled their lead with a looping header over Routledge.
City managed to keep Leeds out but not for Leeds lack of trying with them trying to add a 3rd to the scoresheet but City’s defence made plenty of scrambled clearances to deny the attacks. City had a brilliant opportunity in the 70th minute with some great build-up play in the middle of the park leading to Prothero getting a shot away which was unfortunately straight at the keeper.
As I mentioned earlier the playing conditions lead to a few questionable challenges being made throughout the game but it wasn’t until the final 10 minutes that the first and only yellow card was awarded and it went to City’s Jakeman for a sliding challenge. Leeds did manage to add a 3rd to the score sheet after a mix-up whilst Routledge and Roberts were trying to clear the ball and a Leeds player was brought down in the process. One thing I have noticed is that penalties seem to be a common theme at this level with one being awarded in each game I have been to see so far this season.
From watching the game yesterday City definitely look like they are improving game by game but that final 3rd is still lacking, they can move the ball around and get into dangerous positions but just can’t seem to capitalise on it, hopefully we will start seeing more goals from them soon. Sometimes they also look like they are struggling on the break too players get into a great position but just don’t seem to have any players around them in support which then ends with them giving the ball away.
If I had to choose a player of the match it would definitely have to be Routledge, she really did stop Leeds running away with the game and pulled off some absolutely brilliant saves to keep the scoreline down, even after taking a few knocks she managed to continue helping City stay in the game.
City’s losing streak in the league continues but can they bounce back and grab a win on Sunday against Ripon in the West Riding County Cup?
Bradford City: Routledge, Roberts (c), Shepherd, Parrish, Sales, Woodcock, Stuart, Norde, Stube (Prothero, 61), White, Jakeman
Subs unused: Dyson, Maxted, Sumaili
Leeds United: Wattam, Hamill, Hannon (c), Hunter, Smart (Parkin, 74), Cassidy, K. Hunt (Shuttleworth, 66), R. Hunt, Brown (Ash, 61), Kenyon, Findlay