Bradford City: Fortnight’s hard labour for 'immense signing' Doyle (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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Bradford City: Fortnight’s hard labour for 'immense signing' Nathan Doyle
Nathan Doyle today begins his fortnight’s “boot camp” to be ready for City’s league opener at Gillingham.
Phil Parkinson hailed the return of the versatile former loanee, who signed a one-year deal before Saturday’s 3-0 loss to Bury, as a statement of intent.
But then he warned him to expect two gruelling weeks with fitness coach Nick Allamby to get the 25-year-old up to scratch for August 18.
Parkinson said: “Nathan’s got a couple of weeks now to make sure he’s strong and ready. He won’t be fit for the Notts County game.
“Like a lot of players at this time who hold out for deals, they miss valuable training time. He’s got a big two weeks ahead of him now and he’s going into boot camp.
“But I think he’s perfect for what we needed. He’s an immense signing.
“We looked at things when we came back from Ireland and I just felt we lacked a utility player.
“It looks like we’re going to have a small squad, the budget dictates that, and we’ve now got a player who can cover midfield, has played centre back, right back and left back – mostly in the Championship.”
Doyle made 28 appearances on loan for City under Colin Todd in 2006 and became a firm favourite with the fans, who are thrilled to get him back. City faced a fight for his signature, with Chesterfield among the chasing clubs.
Parkinson added: “The manager at Barnsley gave him a glowing reference and he was outstanding on loan for Preston.
“I’ve told him about the challenge to come here and be the focal point of this team. I’ve always said the players who turn this club round will be heroes and Nathan can be big part of that.”
City had been monitoring Doyle right through the summer since he was released by Barnsley. But the deal was in the balance right up until Saturday morning.
His arrival is even more timely with Ricky Ravenhill sidelined for at least three months.
Parkinson said: “You always look at signings and see if you improve the starting 11. I really feel Nathan, when he’s fit, will do that in a number of positions.
“He is strong, powerful and has got class on the ball.”