By Lawrence Stanley
It’s a quick turnaround for Gloucester City as they head up north to face Bradford (Park Avenue) in the National League North this evening (KO 19:45).
City are coming off what was a superb Saturday at the TigerTurf stadium after defeating league leaders King’s Lynn Town 2-1.
The Tigers now find themselves third in the table following a run that has seen them take 13 points from a possible 15.
Find out more about this Halloween encounter taking place at the Horsfall Stadium below.
Since losing against Merthyr Town in the FA Cup on 1 October, Gloucester have enjoyed a spectacular run under new manager Steven King, winning four games out of their last five – three of which after falling behind.
And despite missing several players through injury, including the in-form Kieran Phillips, City were able to be both clinical and defensively sound as they bagged a huge win against King’s Lynn courtesy of a Tre Mitford double.
The win cut the gap to just four points to the Linnets, with the Tigers one behind second place Brackley Town.
And the hosts’ three-game winning streak was halted by the aforementioned Brackley, who came from behind to beat them 2-1 at St James Park on Saturday.
The run was very-much needed as the Green Army gave themselves some breathing room between them and the relegation zone. The series of wins have got them off bottom spot to 22nd in the league.
It had been a horror start to the season for Bradford, as they failed to pick up their first win until earlier this month.
After two prematurely ended seasons which saw the club flirt with relegation, Mark Bower’s side finished 18th last campaign, two points behind Gloucester in the table.
Jacob Blyth has been providing the spark for Bradford as of late, grabbing two goals in the club’s last three wins and whilst conceding goals has been a problem for them this season, they have managed to show signs of defensive improvement recently with two clean sheets in their last three matches.
Local man Bower has been in charge of the Green Army for six years, with a five month hiatus in-between and has made his team a regular feature in the National League North since the club achieved promotion in 2012.
19 March 2022: Bradford PA 1-2 Gloucester City – National League North
9 October 2021: Gloucester City 0-0 Bradford PA – National League North
14 November 2020: Gloucester City 4-4 Bradford PA – National League North
8 February 2020: Bradford PA 1-2 Gloucester City – National League North
24 November 2019: Gloucester City 0-2 Bradford PA – FA Trophy (Third Qualifying Round)
Steven King’s pre-match thoughts:
On the quick turnaround from Saturday’s game to Monday: “It’s so fast, for Bradford too don’t get me wrong, but it’s a long way to go – five hours or whatever it is, but we’ll go there and give it our best shot like we’ve been doing.”
On the injuries in the squad: “We’ve got seven injuries and lost a centre half (Ben Nugent). The players do need a rest, but we’ve got no time for that now.”
On potential new reinforcements: “We will try and get one or two in on Monday if we can really do it. We have a couple of irons in the fire that may come off. We are heavily depleted and need some numbers.”