Leyton Orient will be hoping to build on the momentum they gained following their 4-1 win last weekend as they look to move away from the relegation zone. Meanwhile, Bradford are currently in mid-table and they too will be looking to continue their positive form following a difficult spell. Here we preview Saturday’s game:
[textmarker color=”F5A316″ type=”background color”]Bradford City[/textmarker]
Top scorer: Nahki Wells 15 League One: 11th FA Cup: 1st Round League Cup: 1st Round
2013/14 saw Bradford City back in action in the third tier of English football following a six-year spell in League Two. Avoiding relegation would have been the main objective for Bantams and Phil Parkinson’s side never looked in danger of going down, their lowest position last term was 15th.
They ended the campaign in mid-table on 59 points, twelve points above the drop zone and fifteen points off of the play-off places.
[tabs title1=”IN” text1=”Matthew Dolan (Middlesbrough), Billy Knott (Sunderland), Gary Liddle (Notts County), Alan Sheehan (Notts County), Billy Clarke (Crawley Town), Ben Williams (Hibernian), Mo Shariff (Queens Park Rangers), Filipe Morais (Stevenage), Christopher Routis (Servette), Jordan Pickford (Sunderland, Loan), Mason Bennett (Derby County, Loan), Jon Stead (Huddersfield Town, Loan), Andy Halliday (Middlesbrough, Loan), Francois Zoko (Blackpool, Loan)” tabs title2=”OUT” text2=”Kyel Reid (Preston North End), Carl McHugh (Plymouth Argyle), Matthew Bates (Hartlepool United), Jon McLaughlin (Burton Albion), Garry Thompson (Notts County), Matt Taylor (Cheltenham Town), Gary Jones (Notts County), Christian Ribeiro (Exeter City),Matthew Bates, Louie Swain. Matthew Dolan (Peterborough, Loan)” ]
Top scorer: James Hanson 5 League One: 23rd FA Cup: 2nd Round League Cup: 3rd Round
Bradford made a reasonable start to the new season as they won three, lost three and claimed a draw in their first seven league games. They then put together a four-match unbeaten streak in the league, but last month they suffered a run of five games without a win the league which included four defeats.
They ended their poor form with a 2-1 win over Halifax Town in the FA Cup and Phil Parkinson’s side followed that up with a victory over high flying Preston.
Last time out Bradford were denied a third consecutive victory by a late Gillingham goal at Valley Parade. The first half remained goalless despite the hosts best efforts. Having already hit the post, the Bantams had a goal ruled out as Jon Stead was judged to have been offside. the home side finally broke the deadlock in the 65th minute when Andy Halliday’s shot went in off Leon Legge, despite the Gillingham defender’s attempt to keep the ball out. However, Antonio German snatched a point for the Gills as he scored from a corner in stoppage time.
Pickford, Darby, McArdle, Davies, Meredith, Morais (Knott 18′), Liddle, Halliday, Yeates, Clarke (Kennedy 82′), Stead (Hanson 70′)
Williams, Sheehan, Hanson, Knott, Zoko, Kennedy, Routis
Although Bradford have improved their form recently, they are without a win in their last three games at home.
Bradford boss Phil Parkinson is expected to be without Filipe Morais after the midfielder sustained a shoulder injury against Gillingham last time out. He lasted just 18 minutes before he had to replaced by Billy Knott.
However, defenders Andrew Davies and Stephen Darby may be available for selection against the O’s. Both players picked up knocks against last weekend but they are likely to be fit enough to feature.
Francois Zoko joined the Bantams on loan from Blackpool last week, but he was an unused substitute against the Gills, therefore he will be hoping to make his Bradford debut when the O’s make the trip to Valley Parade.
Aaron McLean came through the ranks at Brisbane Road but his development was hindered by injury. He made 45 appearances and scored 3 goals for the O’s from August 1999 until March 2003 when he was released. McLean is currently on loan at Peterborough.
[textmarker color=”314EC2″ type=”background color”]Leyton Orient[/textmarker]
Last Saturday, Orient claimed their first home league win of the season in style as they defeated struggling Crewe Alexandra by four goals to one.
The O’s took the lead mid-way through the first half when Chris Dagnall picked out Gianvito Plasmati at the far post. The Italian striker headed the ball back across goal and into the bottom corner of the net. Dagnall then doubled Orient’s advantage when he executed a powerful volley on the turn that found the corner of the net despite the fact that Ben Garratt got a hand to it.
The hosts went in at the interval 2-0 up against the Railwaymen, but they went on to increase their margin, with Dagnall playing a part again. The striker was played in behind the Crewe defence by Romain Vincelot and although his curled shot was parried by Garratt, Dean Cox was on hand to add a third goal.
Crewe pulled a goal back with twenty minutes to go when Anthony Grant beat Adam Legzdins from outside the box with his second attempt in quick succession. The goal led to increased pressure on the Orient defence, but the O’s killed the visitors’ momentum by scoring a fourth goal four minutes from time. Dean Cox released Dagnall, who squared the ball to David Mooney, allowing the Irishman to slot the ball past the on-rushing Garratt.
That victory lifted the O’s up to 19th place in League One, but they are still only two points above the drop zone. A victory on Saturday could leave them just a point behind the Bradford City and if results go Orient’s way they could even be in mid-table.
Leyton Orient will be without Romain Vincelot for the match at Valley Parade. He will serve a one-match suspension after collecting his fifth yellow card of the season against Crewe last weekend.
Jay Simpson and Shane Lowry missed the win over the Railwaymen due to a hamstring injury and a calf problem respectively and they remain doubtful for this weekend’s fixture. Marvin Bartley wasn’t fit enough to be included in the squad last week either and he could miss out again. The O’s may also be without Italian duo Gianvito Plasmati and Andrea Dossena when they face the Bantams.
Darius Henderson (foot), Kevin Lisbie (shoulder) and Lloyd James (broken leg) are all still on the sidelines.
Jobi McAnuff was named as a substitute last week following his return from international duty, while loanee Jack Price also returned to action.
Chris Dagnall’s impressive performance against Crewe should see him retain his place in the starting lineup. David Mooney could be included from the start if Plasmati is ruled out.
Gary Sawyer may be called upon to replace Dossena at left back if the Italian isn’t available as it is thought that Mauro Milanese prefers a natural left footed player in that position, However, as an alternative Mathieu Baudry could be recalled to partner Nathan Clarke in the heart of the defence, allowing Omozusi to move to the left, with Cuthbert reverting to right back.
Jack Price could replace Vincelot, though Pritchard may play a central midfield if McAnuff returns to the starting eleven.
In March 2012 Chris Dagnall joined Bradford on loan from Barnsley. He scored one goal in seven games for the Bantams.
Bradford took all three points when they made the trip to Brisbane Road in March. Aaron McLean came back to haunt his former side as he scored the only goal of the game after 27 minutes.
When the two sides met at Valley Parade in December last year they both had to settle for a point. Lloyd James put the visitors ahead on the brink of half-time with a fine strike. It appeared as if the O’s were heading for an away win, but Nahki Wells popped up with a last-minute equaliser.
Orient’s last win at Valley Parade came in the FA Cup in November 2008. Jason Demetriou put the O’s 1-0 up after a quarter-of-an-hour, but Michael Boulding put the home side back on level terms on the hour mark. However, Danny Granville scored the winning goal shortly after to send Orient through to the third round of the competition.
Bradford’s last home win over the O’s was a 2-0 victory in August 1994, with Paul Jewell scoring both goals.
[textmarker color=”000000″ type=”background color”]Match Officials[/textmarker]
Referee: Darren Handley
Assistants: Nicholas Barnard and Paul Hodskinson
Fourth Official: Anthony Tankard
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Valley Parade Post Code: BD8 7DY