Bradford Park Avenue boss Deacey wary of a Stafford backlash

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Ross Daly’s return from suspension means Avenue’s squad is near full strength Ross Daly’s return from suspension means Avenue’s squad is near full strength

Bradford Park Avenue face the second leg of their back-to-back fixtures against Stafford Rangers and a repeat result could see them jump to second in the Evo-Stik Premier Division.

Victory over Stafford at Horsfall on Saturday lifted Bradford back into the play-off places. The three clubs immediately above them have two points more but have all played more games.

Boss John Deacey is well aware of the pitfalls of playing the same opponents in consecutive games and has warned his squad to beware of a backlash.

He said: “I don’t particularly enjoy back-to-back games but we are faced with this because of the way the fixtures have fallen and the games we had called off when the weather was at its worst.

“It has been a strange season because, until recently, there were four clubs in the league – Kendal, Buxton, Chorley and Stafford – that we hadn’t played and we are almost three quarters of the way through.

“This is the second against Stafford and we went to Kendal on the last Saturday of February.

“We play Buxton for the first time on Monday and we still haven’t played Chorley yet. They are above us in the table so it makes it a very interesting run-in.”

Deacey could decide to alter his line-up and tactics to mastermind another victory over Stafford.

He had Matt Dempsey, Nicky Boshell, Adam Clayton, Nicky Matthews and skipper Rob O’Brien all back from injuries, suspensions or unavailability last Saturday but three of those started on the bench.

This week midfielder Ross Daly returns from his suspension so Deacey has even more options but Matty James, who started last weekend, is ruled out with a back injury.

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