GARY Bowyer will send City into pre-season action with one wish: Don’t get injured.

The Bantams face National League neighbours Guiseley this afternoon in the first of seven friendlies leading up to the League Two curtain-raiser on August 3.

And boss Bowyer is keeping his fingers crossed that his squad can emerge from their warm-up programme with a clean slate for that Valley Parade clash with Cambridge.

He said: “We’re not overly blessed with numbers at this moment in time, so we’ve got to make sure we look after them.

“Obviously playing games is going to increase fitness but the big thing is avoiding injuries.

“That is the main aim for me in pre-season to come through as much as we can unscathed and having as many players available for that first game against Cambridge – and to give me a problem of who to pick.”

City’s pre-season schedule includes four games with locally-based non-league opposition and three full-time teams, headlined by European champions Liverpool at Valley Parade next weekend in aid of Stephen Darby’s motor neurone disease foundation.

After the problems with the build-up under Michael Collins last year, which saw the opening game at Farsley cancelled the night before, the current programme has been carefully devised.

Bowyer added: “A lot of planning and detail has gone into it.

"With (fitness coach) Ben Rome coming in, he’s set the programme with myself, Martin Drury and Chris (Royston) and Dayle (Avison) the physios.

“There’s a lot of communication involved but it is obviously flexible and we adjust it according to how we see fit and how the players are.

“There’s no point flogging a dead horse, as the saying goes. The main aim is to increase the fitness and make sure they are game ready.

“The sharpness tends to come later on as the players follow their programme. But the endurance levels have been good so far.”