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Bradford City's week just gets better and better
Kyel Reid and Zavon Hines will be the big winners from City’s shock reinstatement in the FA Cup.
The Bantams were restored in the competition after director of operations David Baldwin led a successful appeal team at Wembley yesterday.
The unexpected reprieve comes hot on the heels of reaching the semi-finals of the Capital One Cup. And to add to the feel-good surge at Valley Parade, the sale of the club’s former shop and office block to the One in a Million free school has also been completed.
City have still been fined £1,000 for playing on-loan defender Curtis Good against Brentford without having registered all the necessary paperwork. But they can now face the Bees in Tuesday’s replay at Griffin Park – which Phil Parkinson plans to use to give his key wingers some much-needed game time.
Reid has been missing since October 2 with a groin injury. Hines, who was back on the bench against Arsenal, had sat out the previous six games with a damaged ankle.
Parkinson said: “I’m not thinking about that game yet because we have to focus on Southend first.
“But we’ve got players like Reidy and Zavon coming back from injury and with no reserves for a while, this gives us a great opportunity for the two of them to play some part of the game.
“As we said at the time, we had permission from Newcas-tle for Curtis to play. It was a minor administrative error.
“It’s very unusual for the FA to overturn a verdict but at the end of the day, I don’t think they had much choice.
“They have seen the club have tried to conduct themselves in a very professional way.”
Bury and non-league Droylsden had been slung out of the FA Cup in recent years for fielding ineligible players.
Droylsden included a suspended player against Chesterfield in 2008, who scored twice. Bury used a player for a replay who had not been eligible to feature in the original game.
In City’s case, it is understood that while there was a verbal agreement from Newcastle to play the defender, the official permission was omitted from the original documents. The club then contacted the FA with a confirmation but it was past the midday deadline.
Baldwin praised the legal help from Ben Jones, partner at Bradford-based Petherbridge Bassra solicitors and Simon Csoka QC of Carmelite Chambers, while revealing Newcastle had sent a letter of support to the FA.
A City statement said: “We deeply regret our breach of the rules and are currently reviewing our procedures to ensure no repeat of this situation.
“The club also wishes to extend its gratitude to the FA appeals committee for dealing with this matter expeditiously, justly and mercifully.”