Preview: Bradford City
Fitness and availability
As has been the case for a lot of this season, Argyle continue with availability issues that seem specific to the position of goalkeeper. New loanee Will Mannion is available and earlier in the week Derek Adams hinted that Max Childs is likely to remain warming the bench for a while longer as Michael Cooper is not fully fit. However, he did say that Cooper was substitute at Portsmouth so Childs could play in the Peninsula league game (which there is also one tomorrow) so it cannot be made certain either way. In terms of outfield players, Taylor and Threlkeld have been given game time, however they still lack match fitness and are “obviously tired” according to Adams. Threlkeld’s chances are bolstered by Gary Sawyer possibly still suffering from an injury picked up in the closing stages against Portsmouth.
Hosts Bradford have a similar problem to Argyle as they’re without first choice goalkeeper Colin Doyle as he looks set to miss out on the following ten weeks-admittedly Bradford are fine for their next few goalkeepers in line, unlike Argyle. Other players absent for the Bantams include youthful striker Joel Grodowski as he continues to recover from his back injury.
Stuart McCall looks set to continue with the formation and team he has been using for the past few weeks, with Rouven Sattelmaier filling in for the injured Doyle. However, this one change proved no obstacle has Bradford swept aside Shrewbury away from home last week. Outfield players have been relatively consistently picked with no major changes being made.
(4-4-2) Sattelmaier; McMahon, Knight-Percival, Kilgallon, Hendrie; Gilliead, Vincelot, Reeves, Law; Taylor, Wyke
Argyle have a few more options this week it seems, in the FA Cup. Adams tends to be quite cautious when it comes to team selections and is normally reluctant to make too many changes. He is also notorious for giving players their places back after suspension and the loss at Portsmouth last week may see Sarcevic’s position in danger with Songo’o moved into midfield. Taylor is unlikely to start having only lasted 70 minutes in his comeback against Yeovil as Adams looks to bed the striker back in following injury.
(4-3-3) Mannion; Threlkeld, Bradley, Edwards, Taylor-Sinclair; Fox, Songo’o, Diagarouga; Carey, Jervis, Grant
Bradford and Plymouth Argyle have met 49 times, with Argyle winning 21 times, Bradford winning 14 and it has ended as a draw 14 times too.
1930 was the first time these two clubs met with Bradford coming out victorious. The last time these two teams met was just three weeks ago as Argyle ended one nil victors.
Finally, the greatest margin of victory between these two clubs came in 1978 as Argyle triumphed to a six-nil win at home.
In the league, Bradford sit 19 places above the Pilgrims, however, as they say, in the cup, all form goes out the window. Both teams seem to not be able to maintain any constant form at the moment with a few loses and wins working their way in and out of the two clubs recent matches. Argyle will want a second bite at the FA Cup cherry after their experience against Liverpool last season, whilst Bradford will look to go one further having already bounced back from their first round exist last season. I can see both teams cancelling themselves out and a replay being due at Home Park.