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Ross Hannah at the double to drop timely reminder to new Bradford City recruits
Tadcaster Albion 1, City 7
Alan Connell was not at Tadcaster for City’s pre-season opener but his presence seems to have made an impression already.
The Bantams enjoyed a boot-filling exercise at the end of a fortnight of training bootcamp – with all the strikers getting on the scoresheet.
Results at this stage may not matter but goals are always a welcome currency in generating self-belief among the frontmen.
Connell’s arrival may have dropped Ross Hannah another peg down the order but he made a good point in his 45 minutes of action with the opening two goals.
James Hanson’s trademark header and a near-post finish by Nahki Wells ensured they are both up and running before the quality of opposition kicks up a notch in Wexford tomorrow night.
Lofty second-year apprentice Louie Swain made it a clean sweep for the forwards with a tidy header late on, while Andrew Davies and Kyel Reid also joined in the fun.
“It’s good for the goal-scorers to score at any stage in the season,” said Phil Parkinson afterwards.
“ This gave us a good opportunity to put the ball in the back of the net. Roscoe got a couple, Reidy, Nahki, James and young Louie as well, which will build their confidence.”
But City showed good sharpness for a first game and the fitness levels were high. Parkinson swapped the team completely at half-time but all the players did extra work on the pitch afterwards.
Apart from Connell, Gary Thompson and Stephen Darby both sat it out in the clubhouse as a precaution to rest slight strains.
Five trialists were on display for a sun-baked crowd boosted by over 500 City fans. But there was no Matt Hamshaw after Parkinson told him he was looking for more pace on the right flank.
So Anthony McNamee, the well-travelled former Watford flyer, was given the shirt first half. Like right back Michael Boateng, he had been recommended by Jamie Lawrence.
And Tom Taiwo popped up in central midfield alongside the energetic Gary Jones. He is looking for a club nearer his Leeds roots after leaving Carlisle.
Boateng showed a willingness to bomb forward and nearly created an early goal for Hannah at the near post.
But the striker was off the mark in the sixth minute, showing good strength to control a Jones pass and lob Tadcaster keeper Aaran Reid.
City’s defence was rarely troubled and Davies had time to rumble forward to drill in number two, which was swiftly followed by a Hannah penalty after Reid had sent him tumbling.
Then Hanson got in on the act with a powerful header from a cross by youngster Forrayah Bass.
It was predictably all change at the break and City mark two included two more strange faces, right back Javan Vidal and huge centre half Christophe Lowinsky.
French under-19 international Lowinsky had recently been on trial with Newcastle after coming through the Marseille B team. With Luke Oliver at his shoulder forming a pair of twin towers, the home forwards must have felt like a basketball point guard trying to pick a shot past Lebron James and Dirk Nowitzki.
The rout continued with Reid’s lovely pass picking out Wells to score a bit too easily on the turn. As City queued up for more, Ricky Ravenhill, Swain and Adam Baker were all denied.
Eventually Reid, who was going through his full repertoire of tricks on the left, claimed the sixth with a second bite at the cherry after his initial shot was blocked.
Tadcaster got some reward for keeping going when Danny Gray forced his way inside Oliver to claim a consolation. But City had the final say when Swain got the goal his hard work merited from another Reid assist.
City – first half: Duke, Boateng, McArdle, Davies, Bass, Atkinson, G Jones, Taiwo, McNamee, Hanson, Hannah; second half: McLaughlin, Vidal, Oliver, Lowinsky, Meredith, Baker, R Jones, Ravenhill, Reid, Swain, Wells.