Meredith: U’s proved to Bradford City that no home game will be a gimme (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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James Meredith: U’s proved to Bradford City that no home game will be a gimme
James Meredith admitted City won’t “steamroll” every Valley Parade visitor after dropping their first home points since promotion.
Colchester went away with a 2-2 draw on Saturday despite another double from the red-hot Nahki Wells.
City had scored first but then needed a second-half equaliser to deny the youthful U’s, who had teenager Daniel Pappoe sent off in stoppage time.
Meredith, who supplied the cross for Wells to head his second, said: “It was very tough. They were probably the best team that have come here.
“Maybe we got a tad complacent because we’ve been battering teams at home. But we showed character and got back in it and nearly got the win.
“This place is a fortress and the fans are happy with it. We like to pressure teams and get in their faces and bully them into the win.
“Considering we were down, it was a good point. The manager was singing our praises after the game.”
Colchester became the first side in four attempts to score against City at Valley Parade, ending a shut-out stretching nearly five hours.
It briefly knocked the home side out of their stride and left back Meredith detected some restlessness in the crowd before the second-half fightback.
He said: “I don’t think they’re used to (losing) and there was a little bit of moaning going on. But we did them proud to show a bit of character and get back in the game.
“We can’t steamroll teams every time. We’ve only just come back up to this league and we’re trying to consolidate.
“After scoring first, there might have been a feeling it was going to be easy. Then Colchester put us right.
“Conceding woke us up a little and the gaffer had words at half-time. We knew we had to do the right things to have a chance.
“It was high pressure, going into challenges and being competitive, and we nearly nicked it.”
Meredith condemned Chelsea loanee Pappoe for his red-card lunge on Mark Yeates.
City initially feared the Irishman had broken his leg after the tackle by the 19-year-old Colchester debutant, who had only been on the pitch four minutes.
Meredith blasted: “I had a perfect view and thought it was an awful challenge. It was long after the whistle and their player got what he deserved.
“It was just stupid. There was no need for it. Everyone heard the whistle, including him, and he just wanted to go and snap someone.”
City checked out Yeates yesterday and were relieved that he had survived unscathed. Phil Parkinson had feared the worst when the winger crumpled in a heap.
The Bantams boss said: “Their lad launched himself out of nowhere and, from where we were, it looked like Yeatesy had broken his leg. That straight away was a concern.
“The sheer ferocity of the challenge shook Mark up. It was needless because it was such a great game. I don’t know what their lad was thinking because the whistle had gone.”
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