Saturday, 2 July 2011

Bradford City - Valley Parade

Bradford City FC
Valley Parade
West Yorkshire

0871 978 1911
Official Website

Matchday Number: 129
Bradford City 0-1 Wycombe Wanderers
Saturday 29th September 2007
Coca Cola League Two


Bradford away was one of the trips I had been looking forward to visiting. The curry capital of the UK and a ground I hadn’t seen a game at (although I did get a few pictures of the outside of the ground when passing through once)

I decided to stay overnight in Bradford and it was about 10 when we left, due to Macca having to get his wages out of his Mum’s bank account. After listening to him moan that ASDA had ripped him off (which they had) we were on our way.

As usual I visited a few grounds on the way up. Long Buckby was the first stop. Original club of Notts Forest star Gary Birtles and suspected tornado destination according to this weeks papers. Fortunately the weather held out…just, apart from some light drizzle.

Next up was Oadby, getting to and from which was an unexpected nightmare. Due to the roadworks on the “Pork Pie Roundabout” meant that a 20 minute trip took an hour more than that. It would have been longer but for a late dive through the lights, saving another long wait. As per usual the workmen were standing round doing sweet FA.

Near neighbours South Normanton Athletic and Sutton Town were next up, Sutton’s being a nice modern stadium and a friendly club too, chatting to their first team manager who was sorting out the ground for the game on Saturday, such is the way of life at that level.

Stocksbridge Park Steels was last on my list for the day and was the best ground of the lot. A good terrace and a big enough stand for the Unibond League. Nicely kept too and a good pitch. It a pleasant drive up to the ground too, through loads of little streets with some good English countryside to look at.

After fighting traffic on the M1 and M62 we finally got to Bradford at around 5. Traffic had added at least 2 hours onto the journey which was mightily annoying. We went out for a Curry at the excellent Kashmir on Morley Street. – Chicken Tikka Kebab, Samosas, 2 Naan’s, 2 popadoms, Chicken Dhansak and Chicken Curry plus a couple of drinks set us back just £18.60 between us – remarkable value. After a couple of pints we went back to the hotel in eager anticipation of the game, and trying to think of a song for our new Polish keeper.

After a hearty English Breakfast I set off for the game, visiting Farsley Celtic (where someone advised me in no uncertain terms not to bother with Bradford due to it's large Asian population, and that it was only good for a curry). Eccleshill United and Bradford Park Avenue were also visited.

After a look about town I made my way up to the impressive Valley Parade. Wycombe's team news saw Frank Fielding selected in favour of our Polish compatriot, which the Bradford PS announcer had great fun trying to pronounce. Easter was missing, replaced by John Sutton. Sutton was a bit disappointing again, doubts over the quality of SPL defenders must be prevalent amongst the Wycombe fans as Sutton has failed to make any impact since joining Wycombe. I personally think that once he gets his first goal many more will follow.

Wycombe won 1-0 with a goal from Scott McGleish. It was a brilliant performance with everyone playing their part. It would be unfair to single out a man of the match but take your pick form Torres, McGleish or Johnson who were all exceptional.

After visiting Halifax & Liversedge on the way home I got back about 9.30. Barnet on Tuesday - if we perform like we did today, they won't know what's hit them! 

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