LUKE James has been urged to keep his chin up and not get frustrated with his lack of City action.

The Peterborough striker was recruited on a season-long loan but has found it difficult to break into the team.

James has started only three times, and just once in the league in August, with nine appearances from the bench.

His most recent cameos came against Aldershot, when he won the penalty for City's second goal in the FA Cup replay, and Scunthorpe. He has been an unused substitute for the last two games.

But Phil Parkinson insists the 21-year-old remains a valuable member of his squad and has been pleased with his contribution.

The Bantams boss said: "He probably hasn't had as much game time as he expected. But similar to Nathan Clarke when he's not been playing, his attitude has been really good.

"Jamo's impacted games when he has come on as well, in particular against Aldershot when he got the penalty.

"As I said to him, if he was a young 21-year-old on the bench every week at Bradford, it wouldn't be too bad for his career progression.

"But the fact he's had a lot of first-team football as a youngster and he's been used to playing, it's probably made him feel that his career has levelled out.

"But to be at a club like Bradford and be involved in the 18-man squad all the time is not the worst scenario."

James holds the Hartlepool club record as their youngest-ever goal scorer when he netted aged 17. After scoring 16 goals in the 2013-2104 season, Peterborough splashed out £500,000 for the youngster but he had a difficult first year with Posh.

Parkinson said: "All of Peterborough had a frustrating season, not just him. It wasn't as if he was involved in a high-flying team.

"He was involved in a team that changed managers, changed the system every week and changed the personnel all the time. It wasn't an easy environment for a young player to go in to.

"But he always comes in with a smile on his face and wants to get better. I just think with strikers sometimes, they are one moment away from getting themselves going again.

"Jamo's attitude and work rate in training has been absolutely brilliant and the lads love him. He's an absolute pest in training who never gives defenders a chance to settle.

"We've got a busy period coming up over Christmas and everyone's going to be required. He's just got to be ready when he's needed."

Parkinson told James he was unlucky not to start at Scunthorpe ten days ago with James Hanson absent. He opted instead for the more physical presence of new loan signing Jordan Bowery.

The City boss said: "He didn't let it affect him and came on and helped us see the victory through. He's just got to keep his head up and not be disappointed when he doesn't play.

"We've got some good options at the top of the pitch. It's important that every manager has that.

"But you know when the Christmas period kicks in, those games come thick and fast. That's what we keep stressing to all the lads."