Julian Rhodes reckons that rival clubs are envious of the depth of City’s support.

The club are currently totting up the numbers after the early-bird season-ticket deadline finished on Saturday. But they seem happy with the results.

While an official figure is expected imminently, estimates within Valley Parade suggest that the take-up could be close to the 12,000 mark.

Only champions Wolves and Sheffield United were watched by more home fans in League One. City’s average attendance of 14,120 also beat six clubs in the Championship.

For Rhodes, that backing is justification to persist with the cut-price tickets into an eighth season.

And he feels the Valley Parade faithful should willingly take the plaudits for their consistent backing.

The City joint-chairman said: “I think people should be proud of the football club they support. You talk about players wearing the shirt with pride – I think the fans should be doing that.

“We need to reflect on what I pride myself on; that other clubs look on us as the example of a good football club.

“The fans are immaculate. Look at how many we took to Tranmere on the last day of the season for a game that really didn’t mean anything to us.

“People know we take big support away. We’ve got fantastic support at home. The atmosphere at Valley Parade has been phenomenal all season.

“There were a few home games towards the end when we didn’t play very well and the (flatter) atmosphere reflected that; Walsall for example.

“But we want to get back to what it was like, certainly, in the first half of the season and I’m sure we will do that.”

As expected, there was a late surge ahead of the cut-off point when the frozen ticket prices jumped by £100.

The announcement that Billy Knott had signed certainly helped with its convenient timing.

Rhodes is also convinced that Bantams punters are rarely short-changed by the action on offer. He said: “People want entertaining and I think they get that. I bumped into a supporter a while back who said ‘you know what, there’s very rarely a dull game at Valley Parade’.

“He’s right. The performances have been good for the fans, other than one or two at the back end (of last season).

“But we found ourselves getting dragged into a relegation fight and sometimes you just have to grind out what you can in that situation.

“I would like to think that those who’ve bought a season ticket for the last season enjoyed it and will want to come again. They are still great value for money.”