Match Report: Bradford City 1 Walsall 3 Match Report: Bradford City 1 Walsall 3
Posted by: Bescot Banter

Match Report: Bradford City 1 Walsall 3

Here is our Match Report from the Saddlers' League Two meeting with Bradford City.
Walsall made their way to the University of Bradford Stadium on Saturday afternoon as they took on Bradford City in their latest outing of the 2023/24 Sky Bet League Two campaign.

Bradford began the game brightly, winning a corner just two minutes into the contest as Donervon Daniels put the ball behind, and a second corner followed, as Harry Williams turned the ball in from the first out of play. Jamie Walker swung the ball in from the flag-kick, with Matthew Platt getting a head to the ball, but his effort on goal sailed wide of the upright.

Things settled as the game continued, with both sides enjoying spells on the ball without creating anything to test their opposition defences.

Walsall were presented with their first real opportunity to open the scoring twenty-one minutes into the contest, as a foul by Platt on Liam Gordon saw the visiting side awarded a free-kick in a promising position. Unfortunately for the Saddlers, nothing would come of the set-piece.

Bradford were quick to work the ball up to the other end, where Rayhaan Tulloch was fouled by Joe Riley, inside the area, seeing the hosts awarded a penalty, whilst the Walsall man became the first player to receive a yellow card.

Former Saddler, Andy Cook stepped forth to take the spot-kick and duly converted, gifting his side the lead in the twenty-third minute.

Just three minutes later, Walsall levelled the scores as Gordon picked up the ball from Oisin McEntee, cut inside and fired a low shot past City shot-stopper, Harry Lewis.

The Saddlers almost secured a second goal just four minutes after the first, as a poor touch from Kevin McDonald gifted the ball to Freddie Draper, who passed to Isaac Hutchinson, who saw a curling effort whistle inches wide of the upright.

Walsall saw much of the ball as the game continued, but Bradford won a corner in the thirty-third minute as the ball fell kindly for Tulloch, who fired goal-wards from outside the area, forcing Williams to turn the ball behind. Nothing would come of the flag-kick though, as Walker's ball in found Sam Stubbs whose headed effort sailed wide of the upright.

The visiting side were awarded a free-kick in a dangerous position up at the other end moments later, though they were unable to make it count, as Ryan Stirk's cross into the box was headed wide by Daniels.

Liam Gordon joined Riley in the referee's notebook in the forty-third minute, as he was cautioned for time wasting.

Three additional minutes were added to end the first-half, as Bradford won a corner, which was played into the area for Clarke Odour, whose effort was saved by Walsall 'keeper, Owen Evans.

As we reached the third of the added minutes, Walsall won a corner, which was crossed into the area by Ross Tierney and played on by Hutchinson whose touch found Aramide Oteh who fired home from close range to gift his side the lead.

That would be the final action of note, and the first-half came to a close with Walsall leading by two-goals-to-one at the break.


The teams returned unchanged, and the second-half action got underway. Walsall began the half brightly, winning a corner just two minutes in as Stubbs turned the ball out of play, but nothing would come of the opportunity as the hosts cleared the danger.

Eight minutes into the second-half, Bradford opted to make their first changes of the afternoon, with Clarke Oduor and Alex Gilliead making way for Alex Pattison and Daniel Oyegoke.

Rayhaan Tulloch joined those already listed in the referee's notebook, in the fifty-fifth minute, as he was cautioned following a foul on Gordon.

With fifty-six minutes on the clock, Walsall extended their lead, as Tierney crossed the ball in from a corner, picking out the head of Lincoln City loanee, Draper, who nodded home from close range.

Bradford almost pulled a goal back just three minutes later, but Cook's initial effort on goal was well blocked before Tulloch's follow up strike was also blocked.

There was a brief halt to proceedings in the sixty-second minute, allowing Evans to receive attention from the medical team, but fortunately for the Saddlers, it was soon determined that he would be fine to continue, and play resumed.

Walsall felt they should have been awarded a penalty in the sixty-eighth minute, as Draper went down under pressure inside the area, but the referee was unmoved by their appeals and waved play on.

City went close in the seventy-first minute, as Tulloch played in Cook, but Williams was alert to the danger and did enough to divert the effort behind, with the resulting corner coming to nothing.

The hosts opted to make another change to their line-up in the seventy-third minute, as Rayhaan Tulloch made way for Tyler Smith.

There was a brief halt to proceedings in the seventy-fourth minute, allowing Freddie Draper to receive treatment. It was soon determined he would be unable to continue and Jamille Matt was introduced in his place.

Ross Tierney became the fourth player to see yellow, as he was cautioned in the seventy-sixth minute.

Harry Williams followed Tierney into the book just four minutes later, as the yellow card was brandished in his direction following a foul on Smith.

With eighty-one minutes played, Walsall chose to make a second change to their line-up, with Ross Tierney making way for Tom Knowles.

The final ten minutes were a fairly quiet affair, with both sides enjoying time with the ball without creating anything to really trouble their opposition defences.

Five additional minutes were added to end the game, but there was little further action of note and the match was brought to it's conclusion with Walsall winning by three-goals-to-one. A good result on the road for the Saddlers, who took their chances well.

COOK [P] (23')

GORDON (26')
OTEH (45+3')
DRAPER (56')
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