Match Preview: v Bradford City (A) Match Preview: v Bradford City (A)
Posted by: Bescot Banter

Match Preview: v Bradford City (A)

Here we take a look ahead to this weekend's League Two meeting between the Saddlers and Bantams.
Don't forget to join us across our social media channels where we'll bring you all the matchday build-up, in-game updates, and post-match reaction as the Saddlers return to action.

PRE-MATCH VIEWS

The Saddlers' bubble has well and truly burst. After going unbeaten over the opening few games of the season, the Reds are now six without a win and in increasingly desperate need of a return to winning ways.

Despite sitting ninth in the League Two table ahead of kick-off, the Saddlers have been in disappointing form over recent weeks with the forward line failing to make enough of their opportunities in the final third.

With the team heading into another busy month of games it is crucial that they begin to pick up more points as they'll be almost a quarter of the way through their league season by the time they reach November.

Head Coach Michael Flynn has made no secret of the need to be better in front of goal, but the proof in the pudding is in the eating and, after opening their EFL Trophy campaign with a defeat to West Ham United's Under-21s in midweek, we'll be expecting a reaction as we take on Mark Hughes' Bantams.

Bradford arrive at the match on the back of an EFL Trophy triumph over Sheffield Wednesday, a result which will no doubt have boosted their confidence being held to a goalless draw for the second time in three home games against Crewe Alexandra last weekend.

The Bantams made a duo of signings on Deadline Day Luton Town midfielder Dion Pereira and former Saddlers loanee Tyreik Wright made the move to Valley Parade.

WALSALL TEAM NEWS

The Saddlers continue to be without the likes of Liam Gordon, Osin McEntee, Joss Labadie, Joe Riley, and Conor Wilkinson, who are all sidelined with various injury issues.

Captain Donervon Daniels sat out the midweek defeat to West Ham United U21s as a precaution and could return to action this weekend.

New signing Danny Cashman - the Coventry City forward who joined the club on a season-long loan on Deadline Day - is in line for his Walsall debut.

Meanwhile, on-loan Norwich City midfielder Flynn Clarke made a somewhat surprising return to the Canaries on Deadline Day, the youngster failed to make much of an impact upon the team during his brief spell in WS1.

FORM IN FIVE

Here is how the Saddlers and their opponents have fared in their last five league games.

BRADFORD CITY
WALSALL
LWLWD
WDLDL

HEAD-TO-HEAD

The Saddlers and Bantams have met on fifty-four previous occasions and it's Bradford who hold an overall lead having won eighteen times compared to the Saddlers' fourteen.

There have also been twenty-two draws over the history of the fixture, a history which began at Fellows Park on Saturday, 7th January 1922 as the two sides faced off in an FA Cup - First Round clash, which would ultimately end in a draw and force a replay just three days later.

The original fixture produced six goals but still couldn't separate the sides, however, the replay saw four goals scored with a clear gap between the two as the Bantams eased through to the Second Round, winning by four-goals-to-nil.

THE LAST TIME WE MET

The two sides last met at Bescot Stadium on Tuesday, 25 January 2022 in a League Two clash which saw the Bantams snatch all three points via Andy Cook's 88th-minute penalty.

Bradford had initially taken the lead via Matty Daly's first-half goal but were pegged back by George Miller twelve minutes into the second half, ahead of Cook's late winner.

MATCH OFFICIALS

The EFL has confirmed that Marc Edwards, who is based in Tyne & Wear, will be the man in the middle at the Saddlers make the trip to Valley Parade this weekend.

Meanwhile, Conor Brown and Jake Topp have been named assistant referees, whilst Darren Williams will act as Fourth Official.

GAMES
OFFICIATED
2
YELLOW
CARDS
RED
CARDS
7
0
PENALTIES
AWARDED
0

CATCH THE MATCH

If you're not planning on going to the game you can catch the match via the club's in-house service - iFollow Walsall - which takes you through the highs and lows of every Saddlers game.

Not an iFollow Walsall subscriber? There are a range of options available, including monthly, annual, and gift subscriptions. For further information on the service, or to set up your subscription, click HERE.
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