Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting TANEWS to 80360, or email
John Deacey set to ring the changes at Bradford Park Avenue
Bradford Park Avenue must make the most of Saturday's visit from struggling Colwyn Bay if they are to rekindle their hopes of a play-off finish from their first season back in the Blue Square Bet North Division.
Avenue’s second coming in the second tier of the Conference League took its time but they have stayed true to the statements that came out of the club following promotion that they would not be simply making up the numbers.
John Deacey’s men are just inside the top half of the table, although last weekend’s defeat at Gloucester City left them eight points off the play-off places.
They need to take a maximum from this weekend's game against their Welsh visitors as they head into a run of three home games.
After Colwyn’s visit to Horsfall Stadium, next up for Avenue is a Monday-night fixture against Vauxhall Motors - who host second-placed Guiseley this weekend – followed by Corby Town, who are currently 18th.
Avenue had hoped they had turned a corner when, following a devilishly difficult run of games over the Christmas and New Year period, they put an unscheduled midwinter break behind them.
After seven games against promotion-chasing sides, Avenue were frustrated by four consecutive postponements.
That run was brought to an end on the first Saturday of this month when they beat Solihull Moors 1-0 at home.
Unfortunately that victory was followed by last Saturday’s narrow defeat at Gloucester, and Deacey may be ready to shuffle the deck.
The manager has all of his small squad available for the first time in months but said he would name an unchanged starting line-up for the Gloucester game, even though he had such a strong bench against Solihull.
At the time, Deacey rightly said: “I have to stick with the same squad because those 16 are all I’ve got but I have to stick with the same team because I have to be honest with my players.
“We coach them week after week and tell them if they play well they will keep their shirt, and it’s up to the others to take their chance when it comes around. When they have played well and won, you don’t change it.”
The Bradford boss will be able to reassess now after being hugely disappointed with his side’s second-half display at Gloucester.
He felt they competed in the first half, albeit still failing to take their chances which has been a recurring theme, but dipped below their own standards after the break.
With no fresh injury concerns to muddy the waters, the manager has carte blanche to select the side he feels will can the game.