CITY’S ruthless streak impressed Graham Alexander as they eased into the last 16 of the Bristol Street Motors Trophy.

A 4-0 win over Liverpool under-21s at Valley Parade last night booked a place in Friday’s draw for the third round.

Tyler Smith scored twice with Andy Cook and Vadaine Oliver also on target to make it four successive victories for Alexander’s men.

“If you’d have offered me that before the game, a 4-0 win, clean sheet and players coming back into the team, I’d have definitely taken that,” said the City boss. “It was great to see.

“It was a really good night for us. We were dominant for 70 per cent of the game.

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“We lost a little bit after the red card when they went down to 10 men. I thought we took our foot off the pedal.

“But from half-time onwards we really got that momentum back and pressure and deservedly scored some more goals.”

Liverpool had striker Lewis Koumas, son of ex-Welsh international Jason, sent off after 31 minutes.

But the visitors had their best spell immediately after that before Cook’s goal early in the second half calmed City down again.

Alexander added: “I know they are a young team but they’re at Liverpool for a reason because they’re good.

“They are exceptionally quick as well, which we saw a few times on counter-attacks.

“We were just a little bit sloppy in the 10 minutes before half-time. We stopped our running off the ball and missed out on a couple of challenges we shouldn’t have.

“We put the scoreline at risk in that period.

“But we corrected that at half-time, started the second half really strongly, got the second goal and that gave us the momentum to comfortably win it.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Liverpool's Lewis Koumas was sent off for a foul on Ciaran KellyLiverpool's Lewis Koumas was sent off for a foul on Ciaran Kelly (Image: Tom Pearson)

“We had to make sure that we were ruthless and saw the game out really well.

“Even towards the end we were still pressing and defending our goal really well, that’s the levels of consistency that we need.”

Smith’s double made it five goals in six games since Alexander took the City helm. He is tied with Cook on nine for the season.

“Vadaine has just jumped in there with a goal as well,” said Alexander.

“They are spurring each other on, supporting each other and setting each other up for opportunities.

“That’s what we want – that unselfish attitude for the team.

“Even though they’ve scored, I still felt they contributed to our build-up play, how we press, how we defend.

“If they do that and continue to help the team, then I think the team will help them score more goals. That’s how it should work.”

Oliver and Alex Pattison, making his first appearance for two months, both got nearly 40 minutes off the bench.

Alexander revealed that he had even asked the midfielder if he was up for starting the game.

“I spoke to him on Monday and asked but that was me being a bit impatient.

“We also considered bringing him on at half-time. I just wanted to give the starting team another 10 minutes to correct the last 10 minutes of the first half, which they did great.

“It was then the right time to bring those guys into the team.

“We don’t want to rush people. I understand when players have been injured, certainly for a significant amount of time, then we have to have a little bit of care about how we reintegrate them into the team.

“They are both chomping at the bit and desperate to play. It’s good competition for the squad.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Alex Pattison comes on for his first action in two monthsAlex Pattison comes on for his first action in two months (Image: Tom Pearson)

“That’s what we want. I love this competition, it gives you the opportunity to bring players into the team.

“But you couldn’t have said that was a weakened team at any point. It was a really strong one.

“It gave us the opportunity to look at Jon Tomkinson, who we haven’t seen, Vadaine obviously, Alex Pattison and others.

“It was a really good night but we’ve got to continuously push each other to get better levels of performance.”