Following a comfortable season in mid table last term, we will once again be making the long 183-mile journey to Bradford Park Avenue’s Horsfall Stadium.\r\n\r\nMuch like Gloucester, Bradford is a city with a large passion for rugby as well as football, and this is how the Avenue were founded. Originally playing the sport before adopting football, as Park Avenue came to fruition in 1908.\r\n\r\nAlthough by 2012 both sides were over a century old, we met for the first time in the National League North on October 13th of that year. It was the Yorkshire side who triumphed at home in a 2-1 loss on the curtain raiser between the two sides.\r\n\r\nSince then City recorded our first win over them at Whaddon Road in a 1-0 win after Adam Mann came off the bench to net the winner.\r\n\r\nLast season saw Avenue come out on top, with a 3-1 victory in Gloucestershire whilst points were shared away from home.\r\n\r\nBack to the here and now and they’ve fallen on harder times this summer, with just one player currently contracted at the club.\r\n\r\nStar striker Chib Chilaka recently departed for fellow National League North side Harrogate, and his goals will certainly be missed. Chilaka is a real coup for his new side, but City will have another chance to stop the powerful striker, who scored at Whaddon Road last season.\r\n\r\nCaptain Simon Ainge also made his way to Harrogate whilst James Walsahw and Paul Marshall have opted to join Farsley Celtic.\r\n\r\nThe one player currently on the books has come in the form of new signing Chris Sharp. A Welsh centre-forward who began life with Rhyl, Sharp has scored goals across both borders for the likes of Salford City, Colwyn Bay and Marine FC all throughout the 2015/2016 campaign.\r\n\r\nHe has scored prolifically for Bangor City grabbing 33 goals in 40 appearances, and also managed 22 goals in 29 for Welsh Premier League holders The New Saints.\r\n\r\nSharp, the son of former Everton and Manchester United striker Graeme is the first signing of new manager Alex Meechan, who has stepped up from his role as caretaker boss to take charge.\r\n\r\nMeechan is responsible now for steadying the ship at the Horsfall Stadium and keeping their heads above water. Although with just one signing so far this summer and such a big number of players leaving, he’s going to have to start from scratch.\r\n\r\nAlthough a long distance we look forward to meeting with Bradford Park Avenue once again during the 2016/2017 campaign.
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