Battle of the hot-shots! Phil Parkinson hoping Nahki Wells’ firepower can trigger vital three-point haul for Bantams

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: City’s Nahki Wells, pictured, and Peterborough’s Brett Assombalonga have scored 31 goals between them this season City’s Nahki Wells, pictured, and Peterborough’s Brett Assombalonga have scored 31 goals between them this season

Phil Parkinson predicts a shoot-out between two of the hottest lower-division strikers at Peterborough tomorrow.

Nahki Wells faces the Posh for the first time since City rejected their seven-figure bid for him in the summer. And he will be up against Britt Assombalonga, the hitman Peterbor-ough snapped up for a club record after the Bantams had turned them down.

Wells is halfway to his pre-season target of 30 goals and leads the division with 14 in League One.

Assombalonga is on 16 in total – a tally swelled in the past fortnight by an FA Cup hat-trick against Tranmere and two last week at Peter Taylor’s Gillingham.

Parkinson said: “The directors’ box will be packed. People will be looking at the game as a great opportunity to compare both players.

“Assombalonga obviously did well last year at Southend and he’s gone up a level like Nahki and taken to it just the same. They are two good young strikers.

“It will be an open game with chances at both ends. The way they play, they’ve got a lot of technically gifted players but do leave themselves exposed and I do feel we can exploit that.”

Wells could be partnered up front by Garry Thompson if James Hanson fails to recover from a tight calf that is threatening his ever-present run. Raffaele De Vita (thigh) and Caleb Folan (hamstring) are also struggling.

Peterborough chairman Darragh MacAnthony made their interest in Wells public after City had knocked them back.

MacAnthony said at the time on Twitter: “We made a club record bid but, in fairness to Bradford, they don’t need the money so good for them.”

He later revealed that Assombalonga’s capture from Watford for an undisclosed sum had “smashed” Posh’s previous best of £1.1m for Tyrone Barnett.

City turned them down before telling Wells, who dismissively commented that he was “not too focused on moving sideways.”

Parkinson said: “Peterborough did put in a call but Nahki was in League One already. If he moved in that period, he’d have been looking to go to a division higher. He’s at a big club at this level, similar to Peterborough, so he had no need to move.

“You’re always going to get speculation but other clubs will be in the same situation.

“Anyone with a striker who’s got 15 goals, you are going to get people constantly asking about him, which is good.

“If we weren’t having these discussions, it would mean he wasn’t doing very well.

“Nahki has got to keep his head down and keep doing what he’s doing.

“He knows the only thing he can do is affect the game of football over 90 minutes.”

Skipper Gary Jones said: “I know who I’d rather have! I’m probably biased but it’s going to be a good battle between two sharp-shooters.

“Peterborough aren’t up there via luck, it’s going to be tough. But we’re relishing it and hopefully we can come back with a good positive result to start the Christmas period.

“We’ve had too many draws and I’d rather we win, lose, win, lose. But we’re unbeaten in six so we can take confidence from that.”

City have never won at Peterborough in 13 attempts. But Parkinson has happier memories from London Road – he was an emphatic 5-1 winner on his last visit with Charlton in November 2010.

The Bantams chief added: “That was a magnificent performance, really committed with a strong work ethic. If we can do that tomorrow, then we’ve got a great chance.

“I’ve seen Peterborough twice this season and they were two completely contrasting performances.

“They were really poor at Walsall and I know Darren Ferguson was livid with them. But then I saw them beat Tranmere 5-0 in the cup.

“Peterborough were unfor-tunate to get relegated last year with one of the highest points totals. In the main I don’t think their squad has been weakened since then.

“They play a diamond system and we’re going to have to make sure we’re ready for that. But they lost five games before this recent run so we know they are beatable.”

Comments (9)

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10:39am Fri 20 Dec 13

Innocenti says...

MacAnthony said at the time on Twitter: “We made a club record bid but, in fairness to Bradford, they don’t need the money so good for them.”

Who would have thought a couple of years ago you would ever hear a statement like this about City
MacAnthony said at the time on Twitter: “We made a club record bid but, in fairness to Bradford, they don’t need the money so good for them.” Who would have thought a couple of years ago you would ever hear a statement like this about City Innocenti

11:38am Fri 20 Dec 13

Freddy says...

*
I totally agree with " Innocenti" 's comment. Perhaps Mark Lawn needs to read this statement. As Lawn has intimated we need money!!!???.
*
I hope the injured players will recover enough to perhaps be on the Bench. Connel and Gray MAY feature. I will join the Bradford Army tomorrow with my Son. I am fed up of seeing City lose at P'Boro. Lets hope we set the record straighter .
*
Nahki needs to concentrate on becoming a Championship Player with Bradford City. THEN he could command a higher salary and Transfer Fee-- (NB.-Lawn/Rhodes)--G
et his contract sorted NOW!!!!.
*
* I totally agree with " Innocenti" 's comment. Perhaps Mark Lawn needs to read this statement. As Lawn has intimated we need money!!!???. * I hope the injured players will recover enough to perhaps be on the Bench. Connel and Gray MAY feature. I will join the Bradford Army tomorrow with my Son. I am fed up of seeing City lose at P'Boro. Lets hope we set the record straighter . * Nahki needs to concentrate on becoming a Championship Player with Bradford City. THEN he could command a higher salary and Transfer Fee-- (NB.-Lawn/Rhodes)--G et his contract sorted NOW!!!!. * Freddy

11:44am Fri 20 Dec 13

bcfc1903 says...

Good luck to the lads tomorrow and to the big BCFC following tomorrow, hope we bring three points back up the A1 ...sing loud and long!!!!!

Merry Christmas to all.
Good luck to the lads tomorrow and to the big BCFC following tomorrow, hope we bring three points back up the A1 ...sing loud and long!!!!! Merry Christmas to all. bcfc1903

12:33pm Fri 20 Dec 13

Prisoner Cell Block A says...

Going back to the point of Nahki.

If we sell for less than £4m, if indeed we do sell, we are crackers.

He has constantly scored, albeit in the lower leagues, since being 'thrown' into the team in November 2011. You just cannot 'buy' that on the cheap. If this was his first season then there wouldn't be as much realistic hype but as it is the 3rd season on the trot he has produced goals I don't see that stopping at any level as the one thing that has got him plenty of goals is his pace.

At £4m it still only puts him at half of what Gayle has been valued at and he only had one season in the Champ, one in the 4th and the rest was non-league. If anything Nahki has already faced better competition and scared them to death.
Going back to the point of Nahki. If we sell for less than £4m, if indeed we do sell, we are crackers. He has constantly scored, albeit in the lower leagues, since being 'thrown' into the team in November 2011. You just cannot 'buy' that on the cheap. If this was his first season then there wouldn't be as much realistic hype but as it is the 3rd season on the trot he has produced goals I don't see that stopping at any level as the one thing that has got him plenty of goals is his pace. At £4m it still only puts him at half of what Gayle has been valued at and he only had one season in the Champ, one in the 4th and the rest was non-league. If anything Nahki has already faced better competition and scared them to death. Prisoner Cell Block A

7:18pm Fri 20 Dec 13

tyker7745 says...

Wells is going to Leicester for 3 million with Vardy as part of the deal? I have had a couple of quid on it
Wells is going to Leicester for 3 million with Vardy as part of the deal? I have had a couple of quid on it tyker7745

9:38pm Fri 20 Dec 13

huggy b says...

Can't wait for tomorrow! Gonna be nursing the mother of all hangovers, really hope the short trip from north London will be worth it. Let's show the "Posh" (ironic nickname, surely?!) what a proper travelling army sounds like! Boing Boing, Bratfud Bratfud! CTID.
Can't wait for tomorrow! Gonna be nursing the mother of all hangovers, really hope the short trip from north London will be worth it. Let's show the "Posh" (ironic nickname, surely?!) what a proper travelling army sounds like! Boing Boing, Bratfud Bratfud! CTID. huggy b

12:19am Sat 21 Dec 13

Plastic Bantam says...

I dare anyone to disagree with me on the following:

Wells does very little except put the ball in the back of net. Majority of time his first touch isn't brilliant and he doesn't take people on. If you watch his game he doesn't do much else. I know load of people are gonna come back saying yeah but he scores, which he does. However how many goals does Hanson create for him?! If you tried creating goals through another striker Wells wouldn't score as many. Wells is a natural finished however championship players are expected to sort their own goals out. I haven't seen wells create a goal for himself in 18 months correct me if I'm wrong
I dare anyone to disagree with me on the following: Wells does very little except put the ball in the back of net. Majority of time his first touch isn't brilliant and he doesn't take people on. If you watch his game he doesn't do much else. I know load of people are gonna come back saying yeah but he scores, which he does. However how many goals does Hanson create for him?! If you tried creating goals through another striker Wells wouldn't score as many. Wells is a natural finished however championship players are expected to sort their own goals out. I haven't seen wells create a goal for himself in 18 months correct me if I'm wrong Plastic Bantam

11:12am Sat 21 Dec 13

my only vision says...

Plastic Bantam wrote:
I dare anyone to disagree with me on the following:

Wells does very little except put the ball in the back of net. Majority of time his first touch isn't brilliant and he doesn't take people on. If you watch his game he doesn't do much else. I know load of people are gonna come back saying yeah but he scores, which he does. However how many goals does Hanson create for him?! If you tried creating goals through another striker Wells wouldn't score as many. Wells is a natural finished however championship players are expected to sort their own goals out. I haven't seen wells create a goal for himself in 18 months correct me if I'm wrong
Didnt he create a cracker last week in the 92 ndminute ,FOOL
[quote][p][bold]Plastic Bantam[/bold] wrote: I dare anyone to disagree with me on the following: Wells does very little except put the ball in the back of net. Majority of time his first touch isn't brilliant and he doesn't take people on. If you watch his game he doesn't do much else. I know load of people are gonna come back saying yeah but he scores, which he does. However how many goals does Hanson create for him?! If you tried creating goals through another striker Wells wouldn't score as many. Wells is a natural finished however championship players are expected to sort their own goals out. I haven't seen wells create a goal for himself in 18 months correct me if I'm wrong[/p][/quote]Didnt he create a cracker last week in the 92 ndminute ,FOOL my only vision

1:38pm Mon 23 Dec 13

Prisoner Cell Block A says...

Plastic Bantam wrote:
I dare anyone to disagree with me on the following:

Wells does very little except put the ball in the back of net. Majority of time his first touch isn't brilliant and he doesn't take people on. If you watch his game he doesn't do much else. I know load of people are gonna come back saying yeah but he scores, which he does. However how many goals does Hanson create for him?! If you tried creating goals through another striker Wells wouldn't score as many. Wells is a natural finished however championship players are expected to sort their own goals out. I haven't seen wells create a goal for himself in 18 months correct me if I'm wrong
Only a good half a dozen or more when chasing down lost causes or getting on the end of bad backpasses, or chasing down the channel;s and cutting in. He isn't a dribbler as such, he just reads the game well and gets into the right areas often. It's a knack which is not easy to emulate.

If by 'creating' for himself, how many strikers in the lower leagues pick the ball up in the ir own half and waltz round 4 men before banging it in? Not many.

I do agree Hanson creates lots of chances for Wells but the hardest thing in football is to actually convert those chances and the lad is quite good at that.
[quote][p][bold]Plastic Bantam[/bold] wrote: I dare anyone to disagree with me on the following: Wells does very little except put the ball in the back of net. Majority of time his first touch isn't brilliant and he doesn't take people on. If you watch his game he doesn't do much else. I know load of people are gonna come back saying yeah but he scores, which he does. However how many goals does Hanson create for him?! If you tried creating goals through another striker Wells wouldn't score as many. Wells is a natural finished however championship players are expected to sort their own goals out. I haven't seen wells create a goal for himself in 18 months correct me if I'm wrong[/p][/quote]Only a good half a dozen or more when chasing down lost causes or getting on the end of bad backpasses, or chasing down the channel;s and cutting in. He isn't a dribbler as such, he just reads the game well and gets into the right areas often. It's a knack which is not easy to emulate. If by 'creating' for himself, how many strikers in the lower leagues pick the ball up in the ir own half and waltz round 4 men before banging it in? Not many. I do agree Hanson creates lots of chances for Wells but the hardest thing in football is to actually convert those chances and the lad is quite good at that. Prisoner Cell Block A

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