BRADFORD (Park Avenue) slumped to an 8-0 hammering at promotion-chasing Brackley Town after going down to ten men midway through the first half.

Afterwards, interim boss Marcus Law "apologised profusely" while his assistant Lee Fowler admitted it was his "worst day in football".

Holding central midfielder Marcus Wood picked up two yellow cards inside 22 minutes and the Saints were already a goal to the good by then.

Wood’s first yellow, for a foul on Luke Fairlamb, led to a free-kick that hit a few players before going into the net. Brackley winger Glenn Walker wheeled away as he claimed the goal.

Just minutes later another badly mistimed tackle saw Wood getting his marching orders and the ten men were two goals down soon after the half-hour. The Avenue defence failed to clear their lines and Matt Lowe slotted low into the corner.

The visitors’ keeper Rhys Taylor made an excellent save to deny Lee Ndlovu and the Saints had the ball in the net soon after but Jimmy Armson’s effort was ruled out for offside.

All of which only delayed the inevitable as the hosts were 4-0 up by the break. The home side netted twice inside the last three minutes of the first half, with Armson meeting a Shane Byrne corner with a near post header and, on the stroke of half-time, Ndlovu making the most of Avenue’s defensive frailties to fire in off the underside of the bar.

Law made a double substitution at the break, with experienced centre back Ryan Cresswell and young forward Brad Dockerty, a scorer in each of Avenue’s previous three games, making way for Isiah Bazeley and Lewis Knight.

The changes made little difference as Avenue’s discipline let them down again early in the second half. Isaac Marriott made a bad challenge in the middle of the park and was shown a yellow card.

Brackley began the second-half carnage just five minutes after the interval when a through ball from Ellis Myles found the unmarked Byrne and he waltzed around Taylor before rolling the ball into the gaping net.

The Saints hit the post, substitute Carl Barker being denied by the woodwork, and Taylor made an excellent double save parrying an effort from Baker before saving fellow substitute Dan Holman’s shot from the rebound.

Baker turned provider as his 67th minute free-kick was converted by Saints’ centre back Thierry Audel. Baker was close to getting on the scoresheet ten minutes from time when he hit the post after Taylor had parried a shot from Lowe.

Instead it was Ndlovu who was next to net for the hosts as he volleyed home from Fairlamb’s cross to bag a brace. Ndlovu collected a high through ball and laid it off for Holman to wrap up the scoring with the eighth.

Law, who admitted he made a couple of selection mistakes, said: “I felt the level of fitness amongst certain players I was assured about, wasn't where I felt it should be or expected.”

Assistant Fowler added that “the fight for every tackle” wasn’t there.

Avenue remain second bottom in the Vanarama National North but are just one point off the basement after former Huddersfield Town boss Lee Clarke’s Blyth Spartans won their first league game of the season.