BRADFORD (Park Avenue) boss Mark Bower admits finances played a part in Will Calligan’s departure from the club, due to the necessity of bringing Simon Richman into the fold.

Calligan has been a regular at Brighouse Town since leaving Horsfall a fortnight ago, and the move for the midfielder raised eyebrows given Avenue’s small squad and the fact he only joined the club this summer.

Bower explained: “Cally left because we brought Simon in, as well as the fact that he wanted regular football, which we couldn’t guarantee him.

“With Spenner (Jamie Spencer) out injured for the season, we needed Simon’s experience in the midfield, which meant we had to work the budget around to do so.

“We would have liked Cally for longer, but as I’ve said, we had to clear the funds to get Simon in.”

Bower will be relying on Richman to help lead the side to a home victory in their Northern Premier League Premier Division clash against Hyde United tomorrow.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: A dreadful home defeat to Workington was the low point of a disappointing last six weeks for Avenue.A dreadful home defeat to Workington was the low point of a disappointing last six weeks for Avenue. (Image: John Rhodes.)

Avenue have not picked up three points since August, and Bower said: “We need to win.

“We’re still not where we want to be and we have to start picking up victories.

“Hyde at home is a great opportunity, especially with Will Longbottom back from his knee problem and Myles La Bastide getting more minutes under his belt.

“The pair of them just give us options at the top end of the pitch, where we’ve been short of late.

“We’re not panicking, because we feel we’ve been there or thereabouts, but we just need a couple of lads to step up and maybe take a game by the scruff of the neck.

“When we’ve won this season, we’ve won well, but we’ve lost quite a few tight games.

“Successful teams need to have players who can turn those tight games in their favour, and while we’ve got a lack of experience in that department, that should improve as the season goes on.”

Defeat on penalties to Nantwich Town in the FA Trophy last Saturday was another tight game which went against Avenue.

Bower reflected: “We had the better of the chances but there wasn’t a lot in the game.

“They sat deep and made it difficult for us, and we couldn’t quite get over the line, when we felt one goal would win the game.

“They’re a good side, who beat Banbury in the FA Cup and ran Chester close, but we really ought to have got something against them.”

Harrison Hopper rolled his ankle and came off injured during the game, but Bower does not expect the midfielder to be out for long.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Harrison Hopper's ankle injury does not appear to be overly serious.Harrison Hopper's ankle injury does not appear to be overly serious. (Image: John Rhodes.)

A subsequent 5-2 defeat in the West Riding County Cup first round to Tadcaster Albion on Monday was expected given Avenue’s team consisted largely of youth players.

But Bower said: “A few of those lads did really well and you can see the improvements in the academy and the quality of player they’re bringing in year on year.

“It was a good team display and there were long spells where they mixed it with Tadcaster, moved the ball around well and created chances.

“They’re obviously young and small physically, so it was expected that Tadcaster caught us out with a couple of set-pieces.

“But a couple of players really stood out and we’ll keep an eye on them and allow them to have some training with the first, both as a reward and to aid their development.”