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01 September 2018 Venue Highbury Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

Preview: Fleetwood Town v Bradford City

31 August 2018

Joey Barton and his side are back at Highbury Stadium after three games on the road. Bradford City are the visitors this weekend, with Town looking to pick up their first win at home this season.

Fleetwood Town remain 6th in the Sky Bet League One table after the club’s goalless draw away at Lee Bowyer’s Charlton Athletic last weekend.

With a draw and a loss in the first two home matches of the new season, the staff and the players are ready to turn around that form, and pick up their first win of the season in front of the home fans.

First team coach Barry Nicholson spoke to the media ahead of the game against Bradford, and expressed the importance of building the club's home form up, and also about the tough match up against the Bantams.

Barry Nicholson said…

“We expect another tough game against Bradford, and every time we face League One opposition, that will always be the case and it’s important we do our homework ahead of the match.

“Before we will sit down and look at how they could set up and look where their strengths and weaknesses are, and from that, go and build a game plan to go and hurt them and also be really solid ourselves.

“Our away performances this season in the league have been good so far, so now we are looking to build our home form up, and that starts this Saturday.”

Michael Collins said…

“I don’t expect anybody to be feeling down in the dumps or lacking in confidence. We’ve had a good week and there has been no hangover from Wycombe.

“We’ve had a full week to work on things, get people a little bit of a breather from playing Saturday and Tuesday and get some good training under the player’s belts.

“The only way we put that right is by going out this weekend and making sure there is a performance the fans will be proud of and the players do themselves justice.”

The Form Guide

Having played five games in the league, Joey Barton’s Fleetwood Town currently sit inside the play-off places with two wins, two draws and a defeat.

With away wins over Oxford United and Scunthorpe United, and a draw against Rochdale at home, and Charlton away, the Cod Army are looking solid and like a team that will be looking to push the top six come the end of the season.

Barton’s side were eliminated from the Carabao Cup second round to a very strong Leicester City. 11 changes were made by the head coach, with his eyes firmly set on the league.

Bradford started off the new campaign with a 1-0 win away at Shrewsbury Town, and suffered a 2-0 defeat at home to Barnsley, who are a side who have started off well themselves after relegation from the Championship.

Another loss followed at Southend United, with the Yorkshire side bouncing back with a win over Burton Albion at The Valley. In their last match Michael Collins’ side suffered a 2-1 defeat to Wycombe Wanderers, and will be looking to pick up the three points this Saturday.

2018/19 Sky Bet League One Form:

Fleetwood Town: L W D W D (8 points)

Bradford City: W L L W L (6 points)

We’ve Met Before

The two side have 12 times since the first meeting in 2012 when both sides were in the fourth tier of the Football League. Braford City have the upper hand on the Cod Army with six wins in all competitions. There has been four draws, with the latest being in the second leg of the Play-Off semi-final. Town have won two games with one being the 3-0 away win last season.

In the 3-0 win, two former Bantam strikers Jordy Hiwula and Devante Cole scored in the second-half at The Valley, with Ash Hunter scoring a fine goal late in the game to seal all three points on the road.

Last time out, Bradford took all three points from Highbury in a 2-1 victory. Jack Sowerby opened the scoring on New Years Day, with two goals in the second-half from Alex Gilliead and Shay McCartan giving them the win against Uwe Rosler’s men.

One to Watch

Jack Payne has started off this season with two goals in five games, with goals coming in 1-0 wins over Shrewsbury and Burton Albion.

Payne started off his career at Southend United where he was part of their youth academy. He made his professional debut in a 1-0 defeat against Yeovil Town in 2013 in the League Cup, and scored his first senior goal a month later in a 1-1 draw against Oxford United.

The 23-year-old joined Huddersfield in 2016 on a three-year deal and scored the first goal in the Terriers 2-1 win away at Newcastle in 2016. After loan spells at Oxford United where he scored seven goals in 34 appearances, he later joined Blackburn before moving to Bradford in the summer.

Betting Preview

Joey Barton’s side are favourites going into this match to win with odds at 4/5.

Bradford are priced at 7/2 to win away, with odds for 5/2 for a draw at Highbury.

Fleetwood’s last home win against the Bantam’s was a 2-1 win, and for a repeat of that score line is currently priced at 15/2.

Fancy Town to win and both teams to score? Get the odds of 10/3 now!

You can find more odds for the match on SkyBet. Please bet and gamble responsibly.

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Match Reports

Report: Ten man Town defy odds with Bradford triumph

Evans and Hunter goals secure all three points

1 September 2018

Fleetwood Town put in a superb performance with ten men to claim all three points, after beating Bradford City 2-1 on Saturday.

Goals from Ched Evans and Ash Hunter either side of half-time saw Joey Barton’s side win their first game at Highbury Stadium this season. Wes Burns saw red from a tackle on Adam Chicksen late in the first half, with the away side equalising moments before from the penalty spot; with Eion Doyle converting the kick.

Town’s head coach Barton named an unchanged side from the team that started against Charlton Athletic in the goalless draw at The Valley. James Wallace and Harrison Biggins were named on the bench after playing well against Leicester in midweek.

It was a bright start to the game for the home side, with Evans putting the ball in the back of the Bradford net after two minutes. With celebrations underway, Evans turned around to see the linesman’s flag up for a foul.

Town continued to dominate the middle of the park with both Jason Holt and Dean Marney pulling the strings. Holt managed to pick out Burns, who made a great run down the middle – like against Scunthorpe United – and made the away defenders jockey back onto their 18-yard box. The pass through to Madden was deflected out for a corner, a really fast start.

Evans made it 1-0 to the Cod Army moments later. Hunter drifted in from the left wing and delivered a peach of a cross to Evans who was there to nod the ball home from close range. Just what the home side deserved for their start to the match!

A penalty let The Bantams back into the game. Holt fouled George Miller on the edge of the box, and it was left for the striker to send Cairns the wrong way and give Bradford the equaliser.

The Cod Army didn’t let the goal affect them in their approach to the game and within 45 seconds from the restart, Evans had another chance from range. The Welshman was lurking at the far post and his header across the goal just went wide of the keeper’s post.

Five minutes before half-time; Burns saw straight red from referee Mr. Haines after a challenge on the opponents full-back Adam Chicksen. Town went into the break level, and with ten men.

Into the second-half we went and it was Barton’s side who started off the brightest once again. With a couple of attacks down the Bradford left, it was on the third move where Hunter scored on the half volley. The 22-year old met Evans’ cross and guided the ball into the far corner. Just the reaction and the start the head coach and the fans needed in the early stages.

As the fans all around the ground united, it spurred the ten men on the pitch to keep pushing and going at Bradford, and it nearly paid dividends when Lewie Coyle looked to have curled on in from 25-yards out. From our point of view, it looked goal bound.

You’d have thought it was the away side with ten men with the way the game was panning out with Hunter and Madden getting on the ball, Evans holding the ball up deep inside the Yorkshire side’s third. All that was missing was the third goal, which would have been the killer.

Barton’s side managed to keep the door closed at the other end in the last 45 minutes, which was enough to see off Bradford.

A fantastic victory, which was well deserved.

Town XI: Cairns (GK), Coyle, Holt, Eastham, Burns, Evans (Spurr), Madden (Long), Morgan ©, Hunter (Wallace), Marney, Husband.

Subs not used: P. Jones (GK), McAleny, Biggins, Sheron.

Bradford XI: O’Donnell (GK), Chicksen, McGowan (Gibson 62’), O’Connor, Doyle, Payne (Bruenker), Miller, Mellor, Akpan, Colville, Wright (Wood 62’).

Subs not used: Kenworthy (GK), Riley, Isherwood, O’Brien

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