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Bradford City avoid small talk on Accrington trip
Size does not matter – that will be the mantra when City descend on Accrington tomorrow.
Redemption for Rotherham is on offer at the cramped Crown Ground as Phil Parkinson’s men hunt their first points on the road.
But the hosts, despite being watched by a fraction of the crowds City enjoy at the Coral Windows Stadium, will offer another stern test. Last week they shocked Cheltenham 3-0 at Whaddon Road, Stanley’s third win in the opening four games.
Recent history should offer a warning.
City have come a cropper on their last three visits and not scored a goal in any of them. The last was a 1-0 defeat 13 months ago in what turned out to be Peter Jackson ’s final game.
Cheltenham under-estimated their opponents – and Parkinson is determined City will not fall into the same trap.
He said: “Accrington are a good side. I know the Cheltenham manager felt they probably didn’t give them enough respect and got turned over 3-0 at home.
“Without being disrespectful, Accrington are perceived as one of the smaller clubs. But the minute you think that Bradford are bigger and should go and beat them, you don’t.
“I would imagine they’ve built their reputation on that. It’s my job to make sure the players are aware of what’s required to win this game.
“We need to respond to last Saturday. You can never guarantee the result but we expect a tighter performance because when we play in that fashion we’ve got quality in the team.”
Parkinson made his squad watch the DVD from the New York Stadium and believes the lesson has been learned. He is confident City can regain the form they had shown up to then.
“If you lose 4-0 to one of your local rivals there has to be some sort of inquest and it was beneficial. We’ve shown them the good and the bad.
“We know we’ve got a team capable of playing better. We have done and we will do again.
“It’s so important in football to keep your feet firmly on the ground. Don’t get too carried away when you win, or too down after a defeat because both of those can have a detrimental effect.
“We got beaten but we’ve got to put it in perspective. They scored some fantastic goals.
“We probably chased the game too soon and left ourselves open. That’s what we’ve been speaking to the lads about.
“Steve (Parkin) and I are bad losers; we hate losing and so do the players. It really hurts.
“There’s nothing worse than waking up on Sunday morning when you’ve got beaten, especially the way we did.
“But it is a challenge for you as a manager going into the next week. We’ve got to get a response.
“Equally, I’m not scratching round for a team. I’m getting a response from a team that’s played really well this season.
“That’s the beauty of it. We’ve got good players who have performed well and we’ve had one bad result.”