The best of times, the worst of times: Andy Gray on his personal torment at Bradford City

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Andy Gray playing in his final game for City against Walsall Andy Gray playing in his final game for City against Walsall

Andy Gray today summed up his doomed return to Valley Parade as “one step forward and two back.”

The 36-year-old played just 16 times for City, scoring once, after rejoining in January last year. He agreed to cancel his contract on Wednesday.

Gray, who scored 21 goals in 81 games during his first spell at the club in the Championship, admitted it had been a hugely-frustrating episode.

“It never really got going,” he said. “The time I was there was a big success for the club in getting to Wembley and winning promotion but from a personal point of view it didn’t work. I don’t think I played more than two or three games on the bounce so I couldn’t build up a rhythm or match fitness.

“I came into the club having not played regularly at Leeds so I had no football in me. I haven’t really played for two years now, other than sporadically.

“It’s impossible when you are over 35 to play at your best in that situation.”

Gray’s troubles this term began in the opening pre-season friendly when he broke his arm against Guiseley.

Then, when he made his first appearance at Peterborough in December, a goal-scoring return was marred by a damaged nerve in his leg which meant another lengthy lay-off.

And Gray found out after his final City outing, the awful home loss to Walsall in March, that he had been playing with a bout of shingles.

He added: “The Peterborough game probably sums up my whole time. It was nice to get back on the pitch and score but obviously I got the injury that ruled me out once again.

“I’d come back to pre-season aiming to hit the ground running only to break my arm and then suffered another setback. It was always one step forward and two back.

“Even when I made my first start at Wolves, we were down to ten men within half an hour away to the top team in the league. It was an impossible job after that.

“I didn’t feel 100 per cent for the Walsall game but didn’t see the doctor until afterwards when he said what it was straight away.

“I felt totally wiped out for a week or so. I was quite fortunate because it can last a lot longer but it wasn’t the best way to play my last game.

“I’ve been quite lucky in my career with injuries but then all these problems have come at once. That’s just how it’s been.”

Gray is expected to hang up his boots – but has not completely ruled out trying to extend a career that included two Scottish international caps in 2003. He said: “I was still probably one of the fittest players at Bradford. That’s the most frustrating thing.

“Part of me doesn’t want to retire without giving it a go and getting the buzz back.

“I’m definitely fit enough to carry on. But on the other hand, I don’t want to be wasting my time somewhere.

“I’ve got a decision to make over the next month or two.”

Comments (10)

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8:22am Sat 3 May 14

bingleybantam says...

"One of the fittest players"???? He was never fit!!!
"One of the fittest players"???? He was never fit!!! bingleybantam
  • Score: 1

9:24am Sat 3 May 14

tyker7745 says...

As I said when we signed him: A waste of space and money. The fittest player: player in his eyes only. He has enhanced his pension pot significantly and produced next to nothing for the team.

Why did the board sanction this waste of money
As I said when we signed him: A waste of space and money. The fittest player: player in his eyes only. He has enhanced his pension pot significantly and produced next to nothing for the team. Why did the board sanction this waste of money tyker7745
  • Score: -1

12:43pm Sat 3 May 14

dazp says...

You didn't play because you were injured all the time and as for the club it was 3 steps back and non forward jog on oh sorry you can't because you are always injured.
You didn't play because you were injured all the time and as for the club it was 3 steps back and non forward jog on oh sorry you can't because you are always injured. dazp
  • Score: -2

12:44pm Sat 3 May 14

Peter300 says...

tyker7745 wrote:
As I said when we signed him: A waste of space and money. The fittest player: player in his eyes only. He has enhanced his pension pot significantly and produced next to nothing for the team.

Why did the board sanction this waste of money
This is exactly the sort of miserable, whinging, negative wise-after-the-event comment you would expect from fans with a certain mindset. Typically criticising the signing of Adam Drury and the manager before the player even kicked a ball. Andy Gray was unlucky because when he was given the chance to play, he was injured to. Andy was signed as cover for James Hanson last season. If James stays fit, then he misses out. I suppose some foolish fans would want James dropped, but not the manager who has rightly praised his contribution. And, of course, Tyker makes it so obvious once again that he does not rate Phil Parkinson. Now that Andy Gray has departed Tyker will once again don his Alfred Hindsight cap to tell me where it all went wrong.
[quote][p][bold]tyker7745[/bold] wrote: As I said when we signed him: A waste of space and money. The fittest player: player in his eyes only. He has enhanced his pension pot significantly and produced next to nothing for the team. Why did the board sanction this waste of money[/p][/quote]This is exactly the sort of miserable, whinging, negative wise-after-the-event comment you would expect from fans with a certain mindset. Typically criticising the signing of Adam Drury and the manager before the player even kicked a ball. Andy Gray was unlucky because when he was given the chance to play, he was injured to. Andy was signed as cover for James Hanson last season. If James stays fit, then he misses out. I suppose some foolish fans would want James dropped, but not the manager who has rightly praised his contribution. And, of course, Tyker makes it so obvious once again that he does not rate Phil Parkinson. Now that Andy Gray has departed Tyker will once again don his Alfred Hindsight cap to tell me where it all went wrong. Peter300
  • Score: -3

1:11pm Sat 3 May 14

tyker7745 says...

Peter300 wrote:
tyker7745 wrote:
As I said when we signed him: A waste of space and money. The fittest player: player in his eyes only. He has enhanced his pension pot significantly and produced next to nothing for the team.

Why did the board sanction this waste of money
This is exactly the sort of miserable, whinging, negative wise-after-the-event comment you would expect from fans with a certain mindset. Typically criticising the signing of Adam Drury and the manager before the player even kicked a ball. Andy Gray was unlucky because when he was given the chance to play, he was injured to. Andy was signed as cover for James Hanson last season. If James stays fit, then he misses out. I suppose some foolish fans would want James dropped, but not the manager who has rightly praised his contribution. And, of course, Tyker makes it so obvious once again that he does not rate Phil Parkinson. Now that Andy Gray has departed Tyker will once again don his Alfred Hindsight cap to tell me where it all went wrong.
no Peter: I said it at the time and stand by it. It was a terrible signing for a player who would contribute nowt. And he has taken a fortune out of the club for very little input.

The same apples to Taylor: A bad siging
[quote][p][bold]Peter300[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]tyker7745[/bold] wrote: As I said when we signed him: A waste of space and money. The fittest player: player in his eyes only. He has enhanced his pension pot significantly and produced next to nothing for the team. Why did the board sanction this waste of money[/p][/quote]This is exactly the sort of miserable, whinging, negative wise-after-the-event comment you would expect from fans with a certain mindset. Typically criticising the signing of Adam Drury and the manager before the player even kicked a ball. Andy Gray was unlucky because when he was given the chance to play, he was injured to. Andy was signed as cover for James Hanson last season. If James stays fit, then he misses out. I suppose some foolish fans would want James dropped, but not the manager who has rightly praised his contribution. And, of course, Tyker makes it so obvious once again that he does not rate Phil Parkinson. Now that Andy Gray has departed Tyker will once again don his Alfred Hindsight cap to tell me where it all went wrong.[/p][/quote]no Peter: I said it at the time and stand by it. It was a terrible signing for a player who would contribute nowt. And he has taken a fortune out of the club for very little input. The same apples to Taylor: A bad siging tyker7745
  • Score: 4

1:33pm Sat 3 May 14

Rambo says...

Remember seeing him at Guiseley when as the article stated he broke his arm. That was pretty much the beginning of the end for him - looked sharp and alert on that occassion, you actually fancied him being able to hit the ground running but the injury set him back months again.

Maybe if he had got through that game he might have actually been able to contribute more? Who knows.
Remember seeing him at Guiseley when as the article stated he broke his arm. That was pretty much the beginning of the end for him - looked sharp and alert on that occassion, you actually fancied him being able to hit the ground running but the injury set him back months again. Maybe if he had got through that game he might have actually been able to contribute more? Who knows. Rambo
  • Score: 5

2:39pm Sat 3 May 14

torreyman says...

Hang up your boots Gray so we can all cheer hope you enjoy spending BCFC money which you NEVER earned !!!!!!!
Hang up your boots Gray so we can all cheer hope you enjoy spending BCFC money which you NEVER earned !!!!!!! torreyman
  • Score: -1

2:49pm Sat 3 May 14

tyker7745 says...

torreyman wrote:
Hang up your boots Gray so we can all cheer hope you enjoy spending BCFC money which you NEVER earned !!!!!!!
well said:
[quote][p][bold]torreyman[/bold] wrote: Hang up your boots Gray so we can all cheer hope you enjoy spending BCFC money which you NEVER earned !!!!!!![/p][/quote]well said: tyker7745
  • Score: -3

8:40pm Sat 3 May 14

Cyprus Bantam says...

Peter300 wrote:
tyker7745 wrote:
As I said when we signed him: A waste of space and money. The fittest player: player in his eyes only. He has enhanced his pension pot significantly and produced next to nothing for the team.

Why did the board sanction this waste of money
This is exactly the sort of miserable, whinging, negative wise-after-the-event comment you would expect from fans with a certain mindset. Typically criticising the signing of Adam Drury and the manager before the player even kicked a ball. Andy Gray was unlucky because when he was given the chance to play, he was injured to. Andy was signed as cover for James Hanson last season. If James stays fit, then he misses out. I suppose some foolish fans would want James dropped, but not the manager who has rightly praised his contribution. And, of course, Tyker makes it so obvious once again that he does not rate Phil Parkinson. Now that Andy Gray has departed Tyker will once again don his Alfred Hindsight cap to tell me where it all went wrong.
Remember wazzack Drury only missed a couple of games whereas, Gray managed to get injured soon after each game he played (many of the games he did play he was largely anonymous). Accept it man - PP made a mistake in signing him. I know you believe PP to be omnipotent but he is human and does make the odd mistake. Just accept it and move on.
[quote][p][bold]Peter300[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]tyker7745[/bold] wrote: As I said when we signed him: A waste of space and money. The fittest player: player in his eyes only. He has enhanced his pension pot significantly and produced next to nothing for the team. Why did the board sanction this waste of money[/p][/quote]This is exactly the sort of miserable, whinging, negative wise-after-the-event comment you would expect from fans with a certain mindset. Typically criticising the signing of Adam Drury and the manager before the player even kicked a ball. Andy Gray was unlucky because when he was given the chance to play, he was injured to. Andy was signed as cover for James Hanson last season. If James stays fit, then he misses out. I suppose some foolish fans would want James dropped, but not the manager who has rightly praised his contribution. And, of course, Tyker makes it so obvious once again that he does not rate Phil Parkinson. Now that Andy Gray has departed Tyker will once again don his Alfred Hindsight cap to tell me where it all went wrong.[/p][/quote]Remember wazzack Drury only missed a couple of games whereas, Gray managed to get injured soon after each game he played (many of the games he did play he was largely anonymous). Accept it man - PP made a mistake in signing him. I know you believe PP to be omnipotent but he is human and does make the odd mistake. Just accept it and move on. Cyprus Bantam
  • Score: 0

11:45pm Sun 4 May 14

blowinfree says...

Makes you wonder how fit you have to be and it says a lot when he thinks he was one of the fitter in the squad.
I think on the few times he appeared it was plain to see he looked all of his 36 years,a bit deluded should have signed at the time he had the chance but he then fought he was a championship player.
Very risky signing with his lack of games for lufc,a player we should have steered clear of and maybe we could have signed somebody more worthwhile.
Makes you wonder how fit you have to be and it says a lot when he thinks he was one of the fitter in the squad. I think on the few times he appeared it was plain to see he looked all of his 36 years,a bit deluded should have signed at the time he had the chance but he then fought he was a championship player. Very risky signing with his lack of games for lufc,a player we should have steered clear of and maybe we could have signed somebody more worthwhile. blowinfree
  • Score: 2

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