ANDY Halliday didn’t know how close he came to missing out on one of the greatest wins in Bradford City’s history.

The Scot fired the third goal in the stunning 4-2 comeback win at Chelsea that is being called the biggest FA Cup upset of all time.

But City only managed to register the midfielder to play two minutes before Friday’s midday deadline after his move from Middlesbrough took longer to complete than expected.

Halliday, who also scored in the last round against Millwall, was deliberately kept in the dark as Phil Parkinson considered reworking his team plans without him.

The City boss admitted: “We were right on the deadline. Julian (Rhodes) kept ringing me all through training saying it hadn’t come through yet and we had to really push to get it done.

“We kept it from Andy. Julian was saying we can’t let him know.

“So I was trying to organise a team and go through the structure of how we were going to play and I wasn’t sure that one of the players was going to be available.

“But I thought his performance was great. He’s got that athleticism you need against the top teams, he drove us forward with the ball and scored a great goal.”

Halliday’s loan had ended last week and the clubs had to strike a deal for City to take over the remaining length of his contract until the summer.

The midfielder said: “I didn’t think I was going to get back here. It took a lot longer than I thought and part of me thought it wasn’t going to happen.

“Close friends of mine will tell you how much it was getting to me. I was trying my hardest to force it through and thankfully it did.

“That is testament to Bradford. They pushed and pushed to get it through."

Halliday, who is eyeing Manchester United in tonight’s fifth-round draw, added: “I can’t put it into words beating Chelsea. We went to Stamford Bridge and were 2-0 down to arguably the best team in Europe.

“The spirit to come back from that is incredible and I have never seen anything like it. We dominated from the 46th minute to the 97th.”

Parkinson believes City can use their sensational success as a springboard for a play-off push – and will take the inevitable fixture pile-up in their stride.

“Two years ago we used it in a positive way and we’ve got to do the same again,” added the City boss. “You can never take days like Saturday and exchange it for a less congested fixtures schedule.

“This is a tough industry and days like this we’ve really got to savour and enjoy. It’s been a great day for the city of Bradford.

“We closed Chelsea down, were aggressive in the tackle and you’ve got to be. We came to ruffle a few feathers; be fair but be physical when we could. That’s the way cup shocks happen.”

Jose Mourinho described Saturday’s loss as his worst moment in football and branded the Premier League leaders a disgrace. But he still went into the City dressing room afterwards to shake hands with the jubilant underdogs.

Parkinson said: “It doesn’t matter how much money you’ve made or what your profile is, it still hurts you when you get beaten as a manager.

"All the lads appreciate he took the time to congratulate them. That’s the mark of the man."

Keeper Ben Williams added: "He shook everyone’s hand. That was a surreal moment as well.

"In he walked and the celebrations stopped. This figure waltzed into the dressing room. He was very classy, very humble, very respectful – it was the icing on the cake."