April 1999: BURY 0 BRADFORD CITY 2 (Windass 23, 42)

ONLY Bobby Campbell and Frank O’Rourke have scored more league goals for City than Dean Windass.

His tally of 76 – the same as James Hanson – spanned two spells and nearly six years in a Bantams shirt, with a League One golden boot along the way.

It all began for Windass, who turned 51 yesterday, at Bury’s Gigg Lane around this time in 1999.

City’s Easter Monday visit to Neil Warnock’s Shakers was one of those must-win afternoons in the pursuit of Ipswich for the second automatic promotion spot to the Premiership.

The prospect of reaching the top flight for the first time since 1922 was tantalisingly in reach for Paul Jewell’s side.

Windass had arrived a month before to boost their attacking options on a £950,000 deal from lowly Oxford. He would provide experienced competition for deadly duo Lee Mills and Robbie Blake.

But his first five appearances in claret and amber failed to produce a goal. That would change when City made the short hop across the Pennines for their holiday showdown.

Relegation-threatened Bury were on a wretched run, having gone 18 games since their last victory. But they were unbeaten in their last six – all draws, including five 0-0s.

They promised to be a tough nut to crack for a City side who could afford absolutely no slip-ups.

There was a sense of déjà vu about the timing of the fixture.

The Bantams had visited the same venue the previous Easter Monday when the atmosphere was very different.

A 2-0 Bury win was greeted with sarcastic chants of “We’re going to shoot in a minute” from 1,500 disgruntled travelling fans.

Jewell, given the manager’s job until the end of that season by Geoffrey Richmond following Chris Kamara’s sacking, was not viewed as the long-term choice by the City public.

But 12 months on, the contrast in fortunes could not have been more extreme. It felt like a City home game, with their supporters behind the goal at both ends.

Jewell opted to start Windass over Blake for his physical presence, for the no-frills encounter he expected.

City’s new signing knew all about that, having played in Oxford’s defeat at Gigg Lane earlier in the season.

But this one was never in doubt.

City were in control from the off and Ashley Westwood scorned an early chance when he headed wide from Gareth Whalley’s corner.

Jamie Lawrence was playing at right back to accommodate Lee Sharpe, another recent recruit from Leeds, in the midfield role ahead of him.

Both combined up the flank to create a chance for Peter Beagrie, who cut inside to send a bobbling shot past the far post.

Then Beagrie teased his way through, before delivering a low cross that Windass could not convert.

The growing pressure from the visitors told midway through the first half from another corner.

Beagrie was the provider, as Windass claimed the breakthrough goal at the near post.

But replays later suggested that it was Bury defender Darren Bullock with the firm header past his own keeper Dean Kiely.

Windass was certainly claiming it, as he milked the adulation of that particular City end of the ground.

Those behind Gary Walsh’s goal would have seen a solid defensive effort to thwart Bury’s direct approach. Centre halves Darren Moore and Westwood mopped up most threats that came their way.

The only scare for Walsh came from his own man, as Mills flicked on a long throw which required an agile tip-away from the City keeper before Derek Lilley could pounce.

But it became a whole lot more comfortable for the Bantams two minutes before the break. Again, they profited from a corner.

Beagrie took it short to Wayne Jacobs and then created the room to cross. This time there was no doubt about the scorer, as Windass buried it at the near post.

The second half was as straightforward as it could have got for City.

The only question was whether Windass could put a case forward for a hat-trick.

He twice took aim from outside the box but Kiely was equal to both, while a penalty shout for a shove in the box was ignored.

Windass admitted he was a relieved man afterwards to break his duck, while the travelling army trailed away heralding “Jagger” and his promotion-chasing team.

BURY: Kiely, West, Serrant, Daws, Lucketti, Redmond, Swailes, Lilley, Barnes, Bullock, Billy.

CITY: Walsh, Lawrence, Moore, Westwood, Jacobs, Sharpe, McCall, Whalley, Beagrie, Windass, Mills.