BILLY Clarke and Timothee Dieng could return to action tomorrow as City bid to boost their promotion credentials further at Swindon.

Striker Clarke and midfielder Dieng have been troubled by calf and knee injuries respectively but boss Stuart McCall hopes to have the duo at his disposal again.

Their availability would boost a Bantams squad who eked out a hard-fought 1-0 win over Northampton in midweek, the perfect antidote to last weekend’s 3-0 reverse at Southend.

Tony McMahon played 45 minutes for the reserves in a 1-0 win over Rotherham on Wednesday, while Rory McArdle, Nathan Clarke and Filipe Morais also featured.

Assistant manager Kenny Black said: “Billy Clarke and Timothee Dieng are both improving as the days go on and we are hopeful of having them both available for Saturday.

“Billy had a terrific start to the season and is in good form, as is Tim.

“They're a big loss to us if they're not available but it gives us two good options if they are fit to play.

“The reserves game in midweek was good for the likes of Nathan Clarke and Rory McArdle.

“Rory came on for the last five minutes and Filipe Morais for the last half hour.

“It was important for these lads to get some game-time and we won the game 1-0, so it was two 1-0 victories for the club this week. It keeps us moving forward nicely.”

McMahon has not played for the first-team since the end of August due to a recurring thigh problem.

But he is steadily increasing his fitness levels and Black added: “Tony played 45 minutes on Wednesday, so he's getting closer.

“We will have another reserve game next week and Tony will come into the reckoning for that.

“He's not far away and it's important to have him back because he gives us another option at right back, although Stephen Darby has been doing particularly well. We've got a decent-sized squad and it's up to us to utilise that.”

City are neatly positioned in fourth spot and lie just two points behind second-placed Sheffield United.

Black says the Bantams are aiming to cap McCall’s first season back at Valley Parade with a dream promotion to the Championship.

While the club are hoping for an automatic top-two spot, the City No 2 insisted that a play-off place was the minimum aim – but admitted competition was fierce.

Black said: “Coming out of the FA Cup was a big disappointment for us but we're not going to dwell on that.

“I think we’ve also had two or three draws which we could have turned into victories and that would have helped.

“But we're in a decent position in the league and between now and the end of the season we are obviously hoping to finish in the top two.

“That would be great, but certainly as a very minimum we want to finish in the top six.

“You look at the other teams around us and they have been really consistent.

“Sheffield United had a really poor start to the season and they have been really consistent recently.

“Scunthorpe just keep winning and credit to them because since Graham (Alexander) came in last season, they finished the campaign strongly and carried on from that.

Bolton Wanderers are up there, Millwall are starting a little run, and Charlton have just had back-to-back victories.

“Then you've got Southend, who beat us last weekend, so you've probably got 11 or 12 teams who will be there or thereabouts at the end of the season.

“It's really important for us to maintain the standards that we set from day one. Hopefully we can do that."

Following the trip to 18th-placed Swindon, City do not play again until the visit of Cambridge in the Checkatrade Trophy on Wednesday, December 7 due to their interest in the FA Cup having ended.

Having next weekend off has increased City’s desire to travel home from Wiltshire with all three points.

Black said: “The enforced break that we have due to being out of the FA Cup gives us all the ammunition that we need this Saturday to really go for it.

“The last thing you want to do when you've had a defeat is to sit around without a game and dwell on it.

“If we can come back from Swindon with three points, that will be the order of the day.”