Bantams boss Peter Taylor made a double loan swoop yesterday to ease his defensive shortage.

The City chief brought in Burnley right back Richard Eckersley and Watford centre half Rob Kiernan on loan until the start of January.

He has also sent striker Chib Chilaka to non-league neighbours Park Avenue for a month to gain match-fitness.

Eckersley signed for the Clarets for £500,000 from Manchester United in July 2009 but the form of Tyrone Mears meant he did not play in the Premier League for them last season.

The 21-year-old was limited to three starts in cup competitions before being loaned out to Plymouth.

He made a handful of first-team appearances as substitute at Manchester United and has a Carling Cup winner’s medal, having been on the bench when United beat Tottenham on penalties in the 2009 final.

Eckersley’s arrival follows City loan spells from two other United youth products last month in Reece Brown and Oliver Gill.

Kiernan, who has captained Republic of Ireland under-19s, spent the first month of the season on loan at Yeovil in League One. The 19-year-old also had a short spell in Scotland with Kilmarnock last term.

Taylor has been looking to beef up his resources at the back which have been stretched by the absence of Steve Williams, who is out for up to a month with a groin injury, on top of long-term right-back casualties Simon Ramsden and Lewis Hunt.

Shane Duff has trained again this week after his Achilles problem but has not seen any match action for over a month.

Taylor said: “We needed the cover. With the injuries we have, we didn’t want to be approaching the next half a dozen matches feeling nervous every time we played.

“Richard signed for Burnley from Manchester United, so has not a bad upbringing. He is a footballing full back who has come here to push for a place.

“Rob has been out on loan at a couple of clubs and is desperate to play first-team football. He is a confident lad and a good talker.”

Both players are in contention for a place in today’s encounter at Wycombe.

Meanwhile, Nigerian-born Chilaka has been given the chance to get some game-time in the Evo-Stik League Premier Division with Avenue.

Taylor said: “It’s not his fault but Chib has lost a bit of fitness because there have not been many reserve games.

“I’m really pleased that Bradford have offered him the chance to get half a dozen games under his belt.”

* Deacey aims to shore up defence – Page 35