CONTINUING our City Favourites series with part two of the OMAR DALEY interview.


“When we played Leeds (in the Football League Trophy), I just saw a different side to the Bradford fans. It was an early cup game but you could see how much soccer meant to them.

“Leaving that game, you are thinking to yourself, ‘I can’t be messing around right now, I’ve got to get myself in shape to give 100 per cent every time I play.’

“I realised how emotional these fans are when it comes to the game.

“They had not played Leeds for a long time and it meant so much.

“I’ve played in the Azteca Stadium in Mexico City for Jamaica in front of close to 60,000 people – and I’ve never heard fans as loud as the Bradford and Leeds fans were in that stadium.

“That night really changed my life as a footballer. It was one of the highlights of the games that I played in.


“Colin Todd gave me the opportunity but Stuart really set it off. He was more like a father figure to me.

“He would praise me in the papers but was never the same when he closed the office door. Then he’d let me have it - I used to think, ‘this guy is weird!’

“But he would tell me exactly how he felt. I remember him saying that the next time I go to the byline and don’t cross the ball, he will personally use his card and book my ticket back to Jamaica!

“I think he was being serious as well!

“We had a tough start together as coach and player but I knew he wanted me to do well.

“At one point, I was growing my hair and it looked all scruffy. Stuart saw me in the dressing room and said, ‘nice suit Omar, but next week don’t come back until you’ve cut your hair!’

“He told me I had to get it together and I knew that. We developed a really good relationship and I just wanted to play for him.

“When he was under pressure, I was too.

“When I picked up my injury and we were going for promotion, the team just fell away. I felt like I let him down because he’d put so much faith in me at that point.

“We had a good thing going in the dressing room at the time with Joe Colbeck, Michael Flynn and Barry Conlon.

“Not every dressing room was cool, some are very tense because people’s jobs are on the line.

“But we developed a really good friendship and we were friends outside of the dressing room. That gave us that buzz on the field.

Nice suit Omar, but next week don’t come back until you’ve cut your hair!’

“But then the team lost two on the spin after I got injured and you just saw things go down and down. Then the pressure came on Stuart and it was a tough time for everybody to deal with.

“There had been a real sense of belief that we were going to do it, so it was really hard to see it all disappear like that and know that the manager would get the blame.

“We had actually spent some money that year and brought in some good quality. We felt that we could have gone on to League One and do great things.”


“I am still good friends with Nicky Law. He is here in America and we talk every day.

“I helped to convince him to come here and when he retires he wants a job in Las Vegas, so I’m working on that for him.

“He loves it in America and is doing very well. But then he’s always been a quality player.

“He wasn’t just a teammate for me but more of a brother. We were living together up in Scotland at one point when I signed for Motherwell.

“We just clicked from the start. He’s a happy soul, a free spirit, open-minded – that’s Nicky, he’s a good kid.

“America was a good move. I was telling him he could play for another three years out here.

“I decided not to play anymore, I was just tired travelling the world and just thought that was enough. But for Nicky, he can easily still make a living and enjoy America and go on the beach every day.

“We had some other big characters like Michael Flynn. He was pretty loud.

“I always knew he was going to be a manager some day. He was one of those people you either love or hate.

“He could be annoying at times but I knew the qualities that he had. He always wanted more from the dressing room.

“And then there was Barry Conlon, oh my gosh!

“What can you say about Barry? Stuart used to check his breath every morning because he liked to drink.

“He’d come in and straight away it was, ‘Baz, the gaffer wants to see you’.

“I remember one game when none of us believed he was sober because he scored such a great header!

“But he was a good guy, a good player, who just had way too much drink sometimes!

“There was a strong bond in that team and we felt it was unbreakable.

“You don’t get that all the time in the dressing room, trust me, and it was just a real shame that we couldn’t win promotion.”