Chris Brandon wants to make 2010 the year he finally cements his place as a City regular.

The Bradford-born midfielder has played only 26 times in 19 months at Valley Parade.

Brandon started for the first time in six weeks in Saturday’s bitterly-disappointing 1-1 draw with Cheltenham – a stalemate which kept the Bantams pinned in the bottom half of League Two.

He said: “It’s obviously been very frustrating for me because I’ve not had a run of games. I’ve never played more than two games in a row since I’ve been here.

“I feel a bit cheated because it’s my home-town club and I’ve not had the rub of the green. But things just haven’t fallen into place for me – hopefully I can change that.”

After missing most of last season with a serious ankle injury, Brandon’s future was thrown into doubt during the summer’s cost-cutting.

As one of the club’s highest earners, the 33-year-old’s days looked numbered. He did stay on – but has been unable to nail down a frequent position in the side.

City are unbeaten in the last five games Brandon has started, although four of them have been draws like Saturday. He was handed a central attacking role at the head of a midfield diamond.

Brandon, who has been feeling the effects of a bug, said: “Every player needs a few games and then you can start judging them. It’s been stop-start all season due to circumstances.

“I’ve had illnesses and there was a spell when the lads went on a decent run and I couldn’t get back in. It’s hard to get any consistency when you are in one week and out the next.

“I can play anywhere in the midfield or up front but I prefer to be more central. I like to be in there and making things happen.”

City have still not won at home since October. They now embark on a run of five away games in six, needing to maintain their solid form on the road to revive hopes of a play-off fight.

Brandon believes he can have an impact in a make-or-break month of the season.

He said: “All I want to do is play football. If I can get a run of games in the side then people can make up their minds about me.”

Steve Williams will be banned for Saturday’s trip to Port Vale after receiving City’s sixth red card of the season.