Hines shows class for Bradford City in losing cause against Bradford Park Avenue (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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Bradford Park Avenue claim local bragging rights against Bradford City trialists
Park Avenue 3, City 1
He has played for West Ham, Coventry, Burnley and Bournemouth.
Could Zavon Hines be about to add Bradford to his curriculum vitae?
The Jamaica-born winger, 23, certainly did his chances of earning a contract no harm last night.
He played the first 66 minutes of the Tom Banks Memorial match, showing some delightful touches and earning warm applause from the City supporters.
Phil Parkinson included four trialists in Marc Gallego, Jack Mills, Gavin Hoolahan and Hines, who won a penalty which Garry Thompson converted to equalise before Jordan Deacey’s late strike confirmed Avenue as worthy victors.
Hines, a former England Under-21 international, is a free agent after being released by Burnley and was probably the pick of Parkinson’s players against their local rivals.
Spectacular first-half goals from Rob O’Brien and Matty James helped Avenue to victory.
Yet it was the presence of Hines – named on the teamsheet as A Trialist – on City’s left flank which caused the biggest stir for Bantams fans.
He recently spent time on trial at Swindon but lasted only two days there due to a lack of fitness.
City’s reserve and youth team coach Steve Thornber said last night: “Zavon had his first training session with us yesterday and then played for us tonight.
“He’s looking for a club and the gaffer has heard about him and seen him play before at West Ham.
“To be fair, he’s come in and looked sharp. He’s quite bright and has got good feet with a trick or two.
“He looked quite promising on tonight’s showing. We’ll now have a chat with the manager and see where we take it from there. Zavon is in for the rest of the week anyway.”
Aside from goalkeeper Matt Duke and summer signings Alan Connell and Thompson, it was very much a second-string City side.
German defender Gallego did not cover himself in glory at right back, with both Avenue’s first-half goals coming down his side.
In the 17th minute, the hosts made the breakthrough when the impressive Alex Davidson broke clear down the left flank and delivered a low cross which O’Brien dispatched with a sweet strike from just inside the 18-yard box.
Thompson then hit a low shot wide of the target from 20 yards, before Martin Drury crossed from the left and Richard Marshall headed the ball wide at the far post.
In the 23rd minute, City equalised when Hines was brought down and Thompson rifled home from the penalty spot.
Connell looked lively for City as he builds up his fitness but he missed a gilt-edged chance before Avenue regained the lead in spectacular fashion nine minutes before the break.
Davidson again provided the ammunition from the left flank, crossing superbly for James to slam home a fine volley from 12 yards out.
Thornber said of Gallego: “I felt a bit sorry for him because a couple of the goals came from his side.
“On this showing I’m not too sure on Marc but again we will sit down and discuss him and the rest of the trialists.
“I’m sure the manager will form his opinions on the basis of tonight and what they have done in training also.”
Both sides created numerous half-chances after the break, with Avenue introducing former Bantams midfielder Luke Sharry before Deacey wrapped up victory with a clinical finish after showing some neat footwork.
City assistant manager Steve Parkin travelled to Meadow Lane to scout on County in their friendly with Nottingham Forest last night.
Thornber said: “It wasn’t important for Parky to be here tonight. It was more important for him to look at Notts County ahead of Saturday’s game.”
Avenue: Deasey, Duckworth, Drury, O’Brien, Knowles, Riley, Marshall, Hotte (Walker ht), James (Sharry 55), Deacey, Davidson (Blakiley). Substitutes (not used): Greaves, Dempsey, Higginson.
City: Duke, Gallego, Bass, Brown, Mills, Harrison, Bott, Hoolahan, Thompson (Swain 66), Connell (Hiza 80), Hines (Baker 66). Substitutes (not used): Morrison, Boote.